Mar 07



The Broken West - I Can’t Go On, I’ll Go On (Merge)
 This album by US band Broken West is one of many styles and many of them 1960s influenced a fact heavily influenced by the organ sound on first track On The Bubble. Very power-pop like the Teenage Fanclub or Brendan Benson when in full flow with close harmonies. With lots of songs about sunshine this could have be the soundtrack of our summer if it wasn’t a damp March here in Wales. Not a duff track among the twelve here and it really is a good month for guitar pop. Recommended.



Honeydogs - Amygdala (CCE)
The seventh album from US act Honeydogs sees them mature further with some excellent song writing and playing. This record sees them in similar vein to mid-period Pernice Brothers with lush harmonies and clever catchy guitar led choruses. Even an ill advised brush with jazz rhythms on track Ms Ketchup & the Arsonist (I kid you not!) seems to be pulled off without too much effort. They’ve definitely moved away from their earlier country influenced sound to a more pop-rock feel, but they are good enough to get away with it. Interesting.


The Horrors - Strange House (Loog)
The debut album from London Goth boys, The Horrors collects togetehr their three excellent fiist singles, Sheena is a Parasite (a less powerful re-recorded version mind you), Death in the Chapel and Count in Five’s plus very average fourth release Gloves. Most of the other tracks competent punky  tunes with a 60s edge helped along by the Hammond organ. A bit like early B52s fronted by Dave Vanian of The Damned. Just a shame they didn’t spend as long on the songs as they did their hair! Get in early for a version with a DVD.


Malcolm Middleton - A Brighter Beat (Full Time Hobby)
The third release from Glasgow’s (and Arab Straps) Malcolm Middleton sees him continue in moribund mood. Setting out his stall with the hilarious bittersweet opener We’re All Going to Die with the snappy chorus “You’re gonna die, you’re gonna die alone” how could anyone not like this album!! With singles A Brighter Beat and Fuck it , I Love You as obvious standout tracks the remainder are entertaining but not easy listening for the depressive in your life


Arcade Fire - Neon Bible (Rough Trade)
The Arcades Fire album Funeral is generally (and rightfully) accepted as a modern day classic so its follow up has been eagerly anticipated for over two years. We were lucky to see them play Bristol when promoting Funeral (see >>May 05 ) and they were incredible. Neon Bible is a fine record as it goes but Wills voice has changed slighty and the whole album reminds us of Echo and the Bunnymen especially during their Ocean Rain period (listen to Neon Bible track Keep the Car Running and then listen to it!). Can’t understand why Regine voice is not so prevalent nor why they revisited No Cars Go from their debut EP either? Surely they must have new stuff after two years? Disappointing second album strikes again...

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