New Jersey-based Jenny & The Felines are a female-fronted rock band formed by Jenny Cat, a graduate of Berklee College Of Music. The cat-obsessed group has recently released their 2013 debut album, Don’t Look Back, a rock and roll mix of ’60s and ’70s music with a nod to modern alt rock.
The title-track opens the record as an empowering anthem of getting over a past lover, and contains fierce vocals and guitars. An especially ’60s-ish song, “Boston” is breezy and sung in a bluesy voice that is raw yet feminine, like Janis Joplin’s but softer. “Alive” is noticeably darker, as it’s about a girl finally giving up on attempting to attract the attention of a man who would never love her back.
On “Bleed For You,” Jenny Cat really demonstrates her singing ability, reaching high and low notes and transitioning between them with ease. Although the songs are meant to sound like those of yesteryear, sometimes it becomes a bit much. An example of this is “Wanna Be Yours,” which ends up resembling whiny ’80s pop. The closer, “Watched You Go,” starts off with a plucky guitar and is reminiscent of The Bangles, with the casualness of The Beach Boys.
Don’t Look Back is a respectable debut album, with themes of unrequited love and, like the title implies, strictly moving forward. The no-fuss release is simultaneously retro and modern, but occasionally seems like it has all been heard before. Jenny & The Felines show promise, and really are a throwback to the great rock and roll of the past. They looked back, and it works.