It is possible to view The Sorry Kisses' third album Keep Smiling from two contrasting positions. On the one hand it could plausibly be judged as confused, lacking a consistent identity or revealing of the true strengths and comforts zones of the band. On the other, it is a brave and exciting effort; testifying to the willingness of Hayley Hutchinson and Sam Forrest to range across genres in just ten tracks.

In parts, Keep Smiling is a loud, abrasive record. Punky, grungy, riff rock that grasps you, well - by the ears I suppose and shakes you awake, wide awake. Hutchinson's Yeah Yeah Yeahs meets Goldfrapp, by way of Blondie voice penetrates even the strongest guitar crunch to deliver the bolshie attitude pregnant in their lyrics. 'Drifting in the Dark', 'Sunstorms' and 'What's the Big Deal?' are notable in this respect.

However, these grunge-heavy offerings are eclipsed by the notably quieter, more relaxed tracks. 'Loved but Left Behind' presents an effective fusion of music and lyric. On sabbatical from being exceptionally loud and generally kicking off, there is even space for emotional anguish "loved but left behind, got damaged over time". But peer beyond the Hutchinson's post-break up morale boost and the grunge remains, quietly ticking over.

By the time we reach 'Postcards' though The Sorry Kisses appear to have almost completely swapped the heavier aspects for stage managed, soaring choruses. The little outbursts of grumpy guitar seem more like musical coughs than a coherent element. This trade-off might disappoint those Nine Black Alps fans who followed Sam Forrest onto this project, but the joyful 'Fanboy' emerges as more than adequate compensation. Besides the distinct, self assurance of the earlier portions of this record remain embedded in the lyrics "Hey there fanboy! What is it you wanted to say?"

Depending on the stance adopted towards Keep Smiling 'Blue Skies' is either the gem in this energetically migratory album or simply the perfect example of its incoherent identity. As if from nowhere The Sorry Kisses throw nearly five minutes of folksy, acoustic guitar your way; dangling a barrow load of natural imagery to boot: "so I am looking up into the blue skies where I watch the swallow as it flies". If you try to compare this to the rockier tracks confusion inevitably ensues. Does this band like blue skies and meadows, or would they much rather set fire to the meadow and stub out cigarettes on any swallows foolish enough to get close?

This album is almost impossible to rationalise, in attempting to do so, the construction of the album is submerged as the listener attempts to group particular tracks together. It is for this reason that Keep Smiling deserves to be recognised as brave and exciting rather than incoherent. It is a deliberate effort to mess around with expectations and genres, not simply the result of naive musicians or impressionability. After all, why should the album tamely remain in one genre? Instead, by hot footing round the end product is fun and engaging and in this way, original.