Genre-hopping Manchester outfit Y-Key Operators strongly evoke the 90s in two completely different ways on new tracks ‘Warning’ and ‘On My Way’. Taking inspiration from pretty much everything 0161 has had to offer in the past 40 years, they create a proper dynamic sound.
The A-side ‘Warning’ is a pulsating dance number, perfectly suited to both the warehouse dancefloor and for the gym treadmill a couple of days later when you have to sweat out the toxins from the warehouse dancefloor.
The air raid sirens and snappy drums provide a really electrifying sense of urgency, but a bit more could have been done to reflect that in the lyrical content, which goes halfway towards making some political statements but then shies away a little, settling on ‘make love, not war’ as it’s ultimatum.
On the other side is ‘On My Way’, which pulls into a totally different direction. The synth lead is replaced by echo-laden guitar, giving off strong vibes of The Smiths with a tinge of R.E.M.
Lyrically there’s more meat on the bones than its sister song, but you are left feeling that the track could do with moving up a gear towards the end. Maybe that’s just because ‘Warning’ gets you right in the party mood and ‘On My Way’ is the splash of cold water in your face to stop you getting too carried away.
All in all, Y-Key Operators show on this release just how versatile they are, and it’s very impressive. To drift between styles so seamlessly deserves serious respect. They’re showcasing a band oozing with both confidence and talent.