Just two years ago, Una Healy was performing at the Hard Working Class Heroes festival in Dublin, plying her acoustic-folk wares to anyone who'd listen. A change of heart and career direction brought the Thurles native to London, however, where she swapped her guitar for glitz, glamour and girl-band goals. And as the eldest member of The Saturdays (a group who, considering they're on the same label and have recently toured with them) are being groomed as eventual successors to Girls Aloud's throne, she's undoubtedly bound to enjoy a richer career.
Joined by two former members of S Club Juniors, the quintet are purveyors of a sound that can be described at its worst as kitschy Girls Aloud knock-offs, and at its best as pretty damned groovy pop. Undeniably, Chasing Lights doesn't have an original note in its constitution, but that doesn't stop the bleepy, murky deliciousness of Up (especially the Wideboys Remix), the grimy, Sugababes-pilfering Keep Her or Set Me Off's sheer sass - gleaned straight from the Goldfrapp Academy of Fembot Sauciness - from being annoyingly addictive.
The low points are the overwrought, soppy ballads like Fall and Vulnerable, tracks which unmistakably let The Saturdays down. Glossy production and complete hamminess on an album like this is to be fully expected, though - and while this is far, far from pop album of the year, it's too periodically funky to completely dismiss.