New York City’s The Affair pounces onto the scene with their debut album Yes Yes To You. Since Kali Holloway (vocals, lyrics), Nelson Dellamaggiore (bass), Neel Arant (keyboards/guitar), Josh Leeman (lead guitar) and Marc Pattini (drums) first stepped on a stage together, the band has garnered respect and praise in both local and European music journals.
The Affair caught the attention of Vice Records, which in July 2004 released their first single, Honey, a song which showcased their ability to meld proto-punk and new wave allegiances with keen pop sensibilities. After a couple of years spent trolling through NY nightclubs, the band reappeared earlier in 2006 with a new single, Andy, on UK buzz label Marquis Cha Cha. Absolutely Kosher signed the band after chasing them around Austin at this year’s SXSW.
Lately, the streets of rock and roll seem cluttered with matching mod dresses filled with Swedes and Brits with their hair in bangs and Phil Spector in their lockets. The Affair tear through them like a flame. There might be girl groups in their rearview mirrors, but there are knives in their hands and lightning in their eyes. Faux finishing school poses and demure, wistful cooing have been demolished by soulful defiance. The “my boyfriend’s back and there’s going to be trouble” of yesteryear has been appended with “because I’m going to kick his ass for leaving.” Kali’s voice is bruised and angry but triumphant on Dead Letters, playful and sassy on Jailbait Date and positively flawless on Left At The Party. Her own lyricism is at once coy with a wink, but full of piss and vinegar. There’s not a vocal turn on the record where she doesn’t deliver. “Happy endings never interested me,” she wails on Swallow the Nights. If early press is any indication, the world might not abide her.
With a swagger in their sound that could only come from the five boroughs, the band channels bits of New York acts like the Shangri-La's, The Ronettes, and Blondie. Throw in dashes of the Cars and the Runaways and distill them in gin and thorns, it give them a distinctly modern voice. The Affair personifies their very name, at once dangerous, timeless, immoral and ecstatic, illicit and sultry, conflicted and pure. This is one Affair in which you won't mind getting caught.