The Ready Stance
Album: Damndest
Label: Self Released
Tracks: 11

Having cut his teeth in and around Athens, Georgia (home of REM, B-52s etc), singer/guitarist Chase Johnston has given the The Ready Stance a familiar edge of raunch, rage, Rickenbackers and robust melodies that should find favour with fans of a certain kind of American indie that encompasses The Lemonheads, REM, Hold Steady, Juliana Hatfield, The Replacements and The Smithereens.

These are refreshingly open-hearted rock 'n' roll songs - literate, urgent, determined, slightly earnest and totally unafraid to sweat. The opening salvo of Rancho Cristo, Wrecking Ball and Long Arm cover small town sins, big city drinking, everytown angst and anytown blues all delivered with open chords, neat riffs, powerhouse drums and melodic, almost English, bass playing.

Although tracks like Real America and Disgruntled are unafraid of social comment, this is the sound of folk in the industrial heartland and rural toil, where dark things sometimes happen and good people go bad as often as bad people come good. There is polish, but it's the sonic version of beesaw worked in over years rather than a sprayed on sheen.

A classic in the making? Could well be.

Nick Churchill