The Automatic – Steve McQueen single review

4 stars (out of 5)

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After the success of their debut album, Not Accepted Anywhere, Welsh rockers The Automatic return with their second album, This is a Fix. “Steve McQueen” has been chosen as the first single of the new record, and if it’s a sign of things to come the band could be onto a winner.

The song is about the late American actor Steve McQueen, for the younger of you out there. With the infectious chorus of ‘I was the teenage Steve McQueen’, I’m sure you’ll be singing along to this one after the first play. It’s got anthem written all over it, and is pretty easy to follow.

Finding a song to top the heights of “Monster”, the stand out single from the first album, was always going to be a challenge, but in “Steve McQueen”, the band have done a pretty good job. It’s beefy, in your face, turn this one up to full and I’m sure you’ll enjoy.

It’s clear from the opening part of the track that the band has gone in a heavier direction. It’s not overly heavy, but I think it’s something they have needed to do after being criticized for being just another pop act. When the song slows into a series of vocal layers and then the drums come crashing back it really works nicely, and certainly had me tapping along.

Front man Rob Hawkins stands out with his surprisingly soothing voice, which accompanied by the upbeat pace and more rockier feel to the band works nicely. It sounds like The Automatic have matured since their first record, which can only be a good thing.

Fans of the band I’m sure will be pleased with this effort, but I also think they can gain new support once some of the skeptics hear how far the group have come.