See our Best of Detroit 2020 winners.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

In a word: classic

Posted By on Wed, Nov 16, 2005 at 12:00 AM

From the neo-Phil Spector production touches to the reverb-soaked British Invasion-styled guitars to the lush Everly Brothers-esque vocal harmonies, Like Her is a classic pop album from start to finish. Maybe reviewers will finally retire the term “alt-country” from their Volebeats vocabularies. (Granted, the band didn’t help its case by titling — jokingly — its last album, a covers-heavy collection of rock, pop and psych, Country Favorites.) In fact, in both sonic and stylistic terms, Like Her’s lineage can be traced directly back to the Flamin’ Groovies’ 1976 platter Shake Some Action, a power-pop touchstone of no small regard. The lovelorn vibe and guitar-vocal arrangement of “Here It Comes Again,” for example, recalls Shake Some’s “You Tore Me Down,” right down to the closing chord (and don’t miss the aforementioned Spector-esque flourishes, particularly the castanets and symphonic bass drum). The buoyant Byrdsian jangle that infuses “This Girl” makes the tune a close cousin to the Groovies’ “I Can’t Hide,” and knowing that the Groovies and their Shake Some producer, Dave Edmunds, were huge Everly Brothers fans makes the harmony-rich “Everytime” (co-written by the Voles’ Jeff Oakes and Matthew Smith with Ryan Adams) and “September Spell” go down that much sweeter. Will pop fans some two decades’ hence cite the Volebeats as a seminal act of its era the same way Groovies acolytes regard their heroes? Hard to say; the landscape’s a lot more littered in 2005 than it was in 1976. But I do guarantee that Like Her will only get better with time.

Fred Mills writes about music for Metro Times. Send comments to


We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.

More by Fred Mills

Read the Digital Print Issue

October 21, 2020

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In Detroit