Tuesday 20 September 2011
It's been a week since Willie the postie popped the "difficult" second album by the Slow Club through my letter box and it has only been dislodged from the stereo for 7 minute periods since by the new Four Tet 12" single Locked which really is the business.
Back to the Slow Club, I really like the first album but can only take it in small doses as with sustained play it started to annoy me, the whole shambolic thing on repeated listens started to seem contrived, I know that this is not the case but that's the way I started to feel about it. The new album in comparison reveals further depths everytime I listen to it.
Where the debut album was sugary and twee this one feels a lot darker and introspective but still with the great hooks and vocal interplay that made Yeah So, so good in small doses on songs like Trophy Room and When I Go. The third song on Paradise, Never Look Back starts with the lines "Baby Brother in the next room trying to bring him back to life" has got to be the most downbeat lyric since "Girlfriend in a coma, I know, I know - it's serious" and with the hushed tones of the track, first of all you think, christ this is going to be bloody awful but somehow the song in neither depressing nor morbid and is actually quite lovely but I think that may be due to the fact that the tune reminds me of an old soul song which I can't quite put my finger on but maybe not.
It's not all dying relatives and songs of partners walking out the door, there are enough upbeat moments such as Where I'm Walking to keep you from despondency but that's not really true as even on the bleakest tracks there is a warmth and atmosphere that keeps the songs from becoming depressing, it may be something to do with Rebecca's voice but also there is something quite comforting in Charles' guitar playing as well.
When it comes to my end of year lists I think that this album will be somewhere near the top, as will Lights Out the debut by another boy/girl duo Big Deal which was released a fortnight ago.
I do regret not getting off my lazy arse and going to see Slow Club at the Wah Wah Hut on Sunday.
Slow Club - Beginners