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A Hyperactive Workout For The Flying Squad by Ocean Colour Scene

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Reviewed on 23rd March 2005.


A Hyperactive Workout For The Flying Squad

By Ocean Colour Scene

There was a time once when Ocean Colour Scene were nigh-on one of the biggest bands in the country. What were we thinking? Every week we would gather round and watch TFI Friday (and whisper, conspiratorially, "did you know that it stands for 'Thank Fuck It's Friday'" giggle, giggle). As guests entered the show 'The Riverboat Song' would be blasted out. Air guitars would be played. What were we thinking indeed.

It's cheeky that OCS can even consider putting the word 'hyperactive' anywhere near this album. It's thirteen tracks of tedium. This is the sound of a band who permanently sounded middle-aged actually becoming middle-aged. Who says that euthanasia is a bad thing? If you wanted to create your 'average' rock album this is it. It's has irritating "woah wooaahhs" all over, exceedingly tired riffs stolen from The Jam, nasty twiddled lead lines that exist for no other reason than because the band don't know what to do but play them.

It's been nine years since Moseley Shoals became one of the albums of 1996, and Ocean Colour Scene seem to have learnt nothing since then. Nothing has changed, nothing has developed. Essentially, this is Moseley Shoals, but with less songs, less ideas and an even greater need to be predictable.

Particular highlights are 'I Love You' (get this, the chorus goes "I love yoooouuu, I love yooooooouuuuu", genius) where Simon Fowler can't even be arsed to find a key to sing in. More evidence of their lack of creativity comes in 'Waving Not Drowning' (guess how the chorus goes). That idea might be clever, had it not been concocted by poet Stevie Smiths about thirty years ago.

'This Day Should Last Forever' also deserves a special mention for the horrible way in which they've tried to shove a mandolin and harmonium into a dire trough of a song in the hope it might make it sound Irish. It doesn't. It just makes it sound shit. On 'Move Things Over' they soak everything is reverb. Does our song sound dull in this they ask? Yes it does, we say. The last track even has a bit of a reggae-ish feel. I beg you, never, ever listen to that song. You will regret it.

There really is nothing left to say. This sounds like an Ocean Colour Scene album. We all know what OCS sounds like, and a lot of us would probably like to forget. The less said, the better. One final complaint however. Upon the front of this CD is a sticker. It bears the legend "fantastic... their best album since Moseley Shoals", but fails to credit anyone for saying it. Who's betting it's one of the band's wives?



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On 24th March 2005 at 08:52 Anonymous 1205 wrote...

Wow thats Harsh!, Regretfully spot on though. This album is pure vomit.

Oh hark back to the days when "B-sides and Freerides" was my favourite album and we would all sit round a glowing night fire strumming away and screaming the lyrics to "Robin hood" at the top of our little lungs...ahhhhhh.

God back then I used to think Northern Uproar were the next big thing. Anyone else remember them? (tumble weeds!!) Erm ok, just me then!


On 24th March 2005 at 09:52 Anonymous 238 wrote...

"Simon Fowler can't even be arsed to find a key to sing in" ha ha ha, superb. I really can't believe these guys are still trying to make records - they ALL sound the same - terrible. The Riverboat song is still their best tune by a country mile and it ain't that great.


On 24th March 2005 at 13:55 Anonymous 2539 wrote...

I didn't know that was what tfi stood for. so innocent in my youth.


On 24th March 2005 at 15:40 Anonymous 3193 wrote...

I ritually sacrified a cd single copy of the riverboat song a few years ago.

I had the misfortune of seeing them live back just before they became famous, supporting oasis at whitley bay ice rink. A load of geordies were throwing coins and nuts at them on stage, and I remember one turning round to me and said "Aaaaa just heet thaa geetareest on thaa heeed!". Classic.


On 24th March 2005 at 15:53 Anonymous 31 wrote...

Blimey, I got smacked at that gig. He was well hard, in his early 30s headbutting a spindly 15 year old lad. Anyway yeah OCS were toss, are toss and always will be toss.


On 24th March 2005 at 20:35 Anonymous 3717 wrote...

Ocean Colour Scene (or part of) are brilliant when they're playing as Paul Weller's backing band. This CD is pretty crap though.


On 25th March 2005 at 18:30 Anonymous 3946 wrote...

I remember Northern Uproar! Still think that "From A Window" is a classic just a shame they never came anywhere near being that good again afterwards. Agree with all the comments about OCS being rubbish though - surely there's got to be some sort of band amnesia order on groups who've been churning out exactly the same album for ten-odd years hasn't there?



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