Initially, it seemed as if the Electric Blankets were a vanity project and a party band designed to alleviate the ultra-seriousness of their members' parent groups, the Provocative Whites and the Ghost of 505. They fashioned themselves as a guaranteed good time, like Sam the Sham and the Pharoahs. Two years and one single later, the Electric Blankets leave the '60s behind and emerge as the e-cigarette of rock 'n' roll with Vehicles: a shy hipster party at the bar.
What this amounts to and fulfills is the heretofore unknown need of a Smiths for the Fourth Avenue crowd, and it turns out to be a great time. The first audible sound on the six-song Vehicles EP is Raul Michel confessing to a payphone, "faking it so long that I forgot who I was when I single!," leading into the Johnny Marr guitar heroics that in tandem complete the Electric Blankets' definitive, and also greatest, song, "Drive Dive Die." All the hits are here: the stomping "First Song," the winsome "San Francisco," and what will hopefully be the theme to The Breakfast Club, Part 2, "Dirty Prayers."
The two-part dramatic set piece "Summer Dress/Untitled" completes Vehicles' cycle of your gain from their pain. The Electric Blankets wouldn't want it any other way.