Single Reviews: August 2004

 

Lambchop – Somethings Going on (City Slang)

Appearing at Leicester’s very own Summer Sundae Festival starting on the 13th August, this will be the next single released from the band on the 16th August. Perfect timing for those attending SS. A great soulful version, undertones of motown but original in its production. Again surprisingly, I likes!! 8/10

Nic Caesar

 
 

 

A Man Called Adam – Barefoot in the Head (Southern Fried)

Some really class remixes of an old favourite. For those too young to recall this track, check out the more upbeat Cornizenco and Caged baby remixes. Timeless and superb, every dance music fan should have a copy for their summer soundtrack. Big Ibiza favourite for sunset at Mambo!! 9/10

Nic Caesar

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Aberfeldy – Heliopolis By Night (Rough Trade)

Uplifting, intelligent and happy music! Its not my usual tipple but the melodies are very accessible and the harmonies just give it a flow. I like!! 8/10

Nic Caesar

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Dashboard Confessional – Vindicated (Vagrant)

Typical American soft rock with ‘puke in your lap’ sentimentality! It will do well thanks to its inclusion on the ‘Spidy’ flick soundtrack but unless your massively overweight, have issues with your parents and think Jon Bon Jovi should be President, you’ll hate it! 1/10

Nic Caesar

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Armand Van Helden – My My My (Southern Fried)

A first class anthem for the end of the summer season. This track is superb and the variety of remixes available is great. Championed on a variety of radio shows this is getting some serious airplay. Great hook, great beats and production and quality remixes make this one a dead set winner. Best remix is the Deekline and Wizard breaks mix, Awesome!!!!! Released 23rd August. Promos have been around for a while. 10/10

Nic Caesar

 
 

 

Charlotte Hatherley – Summer (Double Dragon)

Hot on the heels of her outstanding download only track “Kim Wilde”, the sultry Ash axewoman returns with her first single “proper”.

Aptly enough, it’s an extremely summery tune, and sounds rather like Jools Holland has hopped behind a piano and joined Charlotte and her band for an almighty jam.

The CD features two further tracks – “Commodore” is another pretty “sunny” sounding tune that sees Ms Hatherley at times sounding reminiscent of Harriet Wheeler (until it gets gradually heavier) and the final track just confirms really what we have always thought (and hoped, frankly) Charlotte might be up for – “S.M.U.T.”

Of course, that may just stand for something completely innocent…but I prefer my own version… 8/10

Tone E

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The Belles – Omerta (Eat Sleep)

Teenage Fanclub.

There, I’ve got it out of the way early this time. You see, I ALWAYS, without fail, compare The Belles with the influential moody Scottish outfit, and this single is no exception. Plus of course, I didn’t want to disappoint you…

Never one to let our readers down, let me also predictably say that this is a nice, mellow, laid back track from the band’s equally melancholy album of the same name.

If you want my advice though, don’t play this if you’re planning to stay awake for more than five minutes! 7/10

Tone E


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Franz Ferdinand – Michael (Domino)

I must admit I was one of those people caught up in the buzz when Franz Ferdinand released the remarkable “Darts of Pleasure” single last year. Since then though, I’ve personally felt that they’ve fallen a little short of the mark with their subsequent releases. Either that, or I’ve just got a bit bored with them.

That said, this track is head and shoulders above the last couple of singles. Maybe it’s down to the McCulloch like vocals circa the Bunnymen’s “Crocodiles” album, or perhaps it’s the extremely sweaty feel of the arrangement, but one thing’s for sure – it’s a damn good tune. 8/10

Tone E


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The Finn Brothers – Won’t Give In (Parlophone)

“This band’s trying too hard to be Crowded House”, I thought to myself like a complete muppet upon first listen. You’d think that the words “The Finn Brothers” plastered in large letters along the top of the sleeve might have given the game away, but nope, not even the close up photograph of Tim and Neil triggered any kind of recognition in Mister Observant’s mind.

In fact, on the third listen, it eventually dawned on me: “Hey…wait a minute…it IS Crowded House” – someone give the man a medal.

There’s not much I can tell you about it really. Just that it sounds exactly how you’d expect it to. Except not as catchy. I mean, I’ve played it three times now and I STILL can’t remember it.

Then again, knowing what MY memory’s like… 6/10

Tone E

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Elena – With Those Eyes (Delicious)

I’m sure they could have found a better, less “butch” looking photograph of ex-soccer celebrity Elena to put on the front of this sleeve, but then I can’t help wondering if they were going for the “cool” look, a la Bobby Gillespie.

Whatever. On to the music, which sounds like PJ Harvey, Patti Smith and Cerys Matthew having a minor disagreement.

Second track, “Last Night On Earth” is a billion times better than the leading tune here, complete with its Alison Goldfrapp circa “Felt Mountain” style vocal intro, but you can’t get away from the fact that these songs sound ridiculously like Catatonia. 6/10

Tone E

 
 

 

Sam Roberts – Brother Down (Vertigo)

Sounding rather like a latin version of the Eels, Sam Roberts’ “Brother Down” is a laid back, extremely well crafted little ditty that is a pointer towards why the band has been voted as “Artist of the Year”, and also picked up “Album of the Year” and “Rock Album of the Year” at the recent Juno Awards.

It’s a remarkably infectious release that oozes cool and just makes you want to DANCE. In fact, it even makes you want to say the word “DANCE” in a Barry White style voice, so hip and trendy are the sounds emanating from these guys.

This really is ultra cool and fills me with optimism for any future releases. 8/10

Tone E


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Ben Christophers – Good Day For the Hopeless (Cooking Vinyl)

He’s a very versatile artist, is Mr. Christophers. That’s the impression that I get anyway, going on the strength of his recent download only single (the excellent “Devil To Kill” and now, by contrast, this bleakly sanguine offering that sounds a bit like David Sylvian vocalising over a more positive Radiohead composition.

The wonderfully dark “Walking With You” is next, and then Ben comes over all Cat Stevens on us for the third and final track – a demo version of “She”.

So, another very worthy single from one of the most promising artists of the moment. 8/10

Tone E

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[The Real] Tuesday Weld – The Ugly & The Beautiful ([PIAS])

Not really my kind of music but I actually don’t mind this too much. The saving grace is that the ‘Backini’ remix has a bit more ‘umph’ to it. Nice vocals, good melody and so on but it just does not give me enough of a buzz. 6/10

Nic Caesar

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Sophia – Holidays Are Nice (City Slang)

A summer song for sure! More guitar based and ‘bandy’ than I usually like but this is a very together production with a good vocal hook and a balanced track. Uplifting summer driving music! 7/10

Nic Caesar

 
 

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