By Last Night's TV
To get a picture of a band, I like to imagine them making a cup of tea. Teatime round U2'S house is an overwrought, posturing kind of experience with more drama than is actually necessary to get the teabag in the cup. Emo bands smash the cups in fury at their whiteboy pain and then drink boiling water straight from the kettle. Last Night's TV sound like they are happily drowning in a giant cup of camomile tea. I could throw criticisms at them - the girl sounds too much like Kathryn Williams, the boy is definitely rubbish in bed and they aren't really pushing themselves- but when a band gets this comfy in their comfort zone it would be churlish to do anything but enjoy it. Do you know that thing where you listen to music half asleep, drifting in and out of consciousness, and then you wake up during the last song and realise you have slept through all the best bits so you press play again- all through a lovely Sunday? That's what this album is for. The stand out tracks are well placed -the title track at the start, 'You Know Your Way Around' in the middle and 'We Fell Out' at the end, and they cascade simple, pretty melodies from unexpected angles without ever seeming contrived. The ones inbetween seem more mediocre at first but repeated sleepy listening reveals a band not trying too hard at all, sitting in a warm bath of synthy effects and gently strummed acoustics and splashing about.
Spencer Bayles only lives round the corner from me and it is slightly tempting to pop round in the dead of night and smash his windows, just to kick him up the bum a bit. If somebody hit them with a stick for a bit you might be able to beat sufficient soul into Last Night's TV to make a truly great band. For now they seem happy enough to be only a good one, assured enough to do what they really like and do it beautifully. Be nice if there was a few perkier ones with a faster beat next time, but hey - I always want the moon on a stick.