A curiously muted mist hangs around "Always Golden", due partly to the choir girl harmonies. When the rather stern drum pattern kicked in for "Be Alive" and the housey piano, I thought it might be about to launch into a tirade - but it's actually a question: "How does it feel to/Be alive?" "Sugarloaf" has the same curious mix of an insistent piano line (and even some electric geetarr) with icily somnolent lady vocals. It's an unusual mix - Marmite and peanut butter: one of my favourites. It's a curious voice to hear saying "We could start a war". Clouds drift about the mix, but bearing a rain of death.
On a side note, did people used to dress up to quite the same degree in the yoresterdays? It seems every one has to gun for eccentricity with such all-out ferocity these days. I take this as an example of the commodification of self-expression. There are so many bits and fucking pieces out there that folk can be endlessly styled in as many directions as they see fit. It shouldn't irritate me, but it do. Where are the cunts in basic leathers and tees, eh? Eh?
"Reconsider King" is perhaps the stand-out amongst the sweet things; all lightly-plucked banjos, shivering wordless coos and melodious heft. The closer "Restless Souls" reaches out for a medieval punch at the beginning before it flattens out into an old skool Belle & Sebastian like plateau of twee chugging. That sounds like I don't like it, but I've decided I like indie chugs. There's an element of Madchester in there that I can't quite pick out - the melodic swirl has a touch of rave cave underneath. Stately Wayne Manor with the Batcave looming underneath. "Be Alive" has some bassy sweeps along the bottom.
Eddying string sounds, lemon-scented vocals and a hint of the glo-stick.
Rating: Stately Coos out of Rave Cave