Sweet, soft, yet packing a delicate punch, The Vanities’ latest single ‘Just Passing Thru’ is a gorgeously crafted piece of country pop that checks all the boxes.

With its flowing stream of lush, lap steel guitar slides, ‘Just Passing Thru’ and its ‘Jammy Remix’ are both terrific pieces of pop for a chill drive down an empty country road. In a twist, The Vanities are not American, in spite of their pristine Americana flair, they are in fact a band hailing from the Welch capital Cardiff, fronted by the voice and guitar of Rhys Bradley, and the backing from Adam Hill’s bass and keys.

Back with a double-A side single, composed of ‘Just Passing Thru’ and its ‘Jammy Remix’, a tighter, more overdriven spin on the amazing single, featuring award-winning country musician Bob Fitzgerald. The songs shine with their terrific, light compositions, made up of emotive, familiar-sounding chord sequences, backed by some heartfelt melodies and words, making for some genuinely sweet-sounding musicality. The production of ‘Just Passing Thru’ is also lighthearted. With a thunderous groove, pushed into the background until it is a mere hint, and a torrent of lap steel licks put in the forefront, the production is strongly selling its country leanings. While on the ‘Jammy Remix’, things get a little punchier, with the drums and bass more present, and with them a fantastic Hammond organ, and even rhythm electric guitar riffs. We just can’t choose.

This AA single is deceptively good. While on the surface it might look like a song and a different version of that same song, diving a bit deeper, it becomes clear that the two sides of the singles carry two completely different beings. Whether it is the light country-pop on the original cut you dig more, or the rockier cut on the ‘Jammy Remix’ and its fiery solos, there is no denying that The Vanities have written a true stunner with unforgettable melodies and atmospheres.