May 05

The Dears - 22: The Death of All the Romance (Bella Union)
Third single from the Canadian’s excellent No Cities Left album. We saw them twice in January and they were superb. This one that has the bands couple singing their love for one another. Lush orchestral parts from the girls on keyboards and top crooning with Murray sounding very  Damon Albarn. Mixed by ex-Cocteau Twin Simon Raymonde. Issued on two different 7” singles with slightly different mixes across them, can you tell the difference? Could it be chart time for The Dears?, lets hope so...


Boom Bip & Gruff Rhys - Do’s & Don’ts (Lex Records)
Super Furry Animal Gruff, gets up to much weirdness with Boom Blip. Echo laden vocals front a merry-go-round that you certainly wouldn’t let your kids take a ride on! Gruffs’ hypnotic chant sounds like it could be used as a soundtrack to a freak show. The song starts slow and ends at a breakneck speed - what were they on when they made this! Far too odd for radio but strangely compelling and interesting. As they say on Crimewatch UK- Don’t have nightmares! 


Maximo Park - Graffiti (Warp Records)
Noisy guitars, Hammond organ whining away, this sounds like early Gene or perhaps the Ordinary Boys to us. “I’ll do Graffiti if you’ll sing to me in French, what are we doing here, if romance isn’t dead” Hmm, I’ll go and read some Mills & Boon and come back to you on that one boys.. Power pop revival anyone? Nice white vinyl....

Idlewild - I Understand It (Parlophone)
Taken from the rather good  Warnings/Promises album, one of their best tunes and its a slow burner featuring the trademark clever guitar hook. Better than anything REM have done in years but not filling stadiums yet. As always with Idlewild singles, issued on limited numbered 7” 

DJ Shadow vs Keane - We Might As Well Be Strangers It (Interscope)
DJ Shadow apparently remixed this as the loves mild-mannered Keane so much. So why did he pick the worse track on the album and then not try to add his usual magic? On first listen we though the record was warped, but no, it’s supposed to sound like that! If you told us this was done by a 9 year old with an old Drum Machine, a casiotone keyboard and a dansette found in the attic, we’d believe you! Hard to imagine what the man who made the classic Entroducing album really thinks he’s doing. Maybe it should have been renamed “We might as well of not bothered”. Avoid this 10” import and buy something worthwhile. We wish we had!

The House of Love - Gotta Be that Way (Art & Industry)
Second single taken from the return album Days Run Away that sees the old indie partnership of Bickers/Chadwick back together after nearly 15 years. It’s almost as if the you are taken back to their heyday on Creation in the late 1980’s with a catchy effects laden lead guitar from Bickers marrying perfectly with  Chadwick’s double tracked vocals. They were good then and they’re good now. If you haven’t heard their first album The House of Love you really are missing out. Days Run Away isn’t bad either..

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