By Five O'Clock Heroes
Today in chateaux Lewis we open the packaging to discover a wonderful display of thoughtful CD case design. When it's all together it makes sense but take it apart and it's nonsense. Hmmm. (Run down to your local compact disc retailer and check it out). It helps me think that not having an iPod in this day and age isn't such a crime. Jam in the disc and away we go. Five O'Clock Heroes are made up of two Brits and two Americans based in New York. They're making their main assault on this side of the pond with a national tour.
Opener 'Head Games' sets the scene for the rest of the album. Snappy riffs and a strained Joe Strummer style vocal run throughout. It's punky but with ska flavours. 'Anybody Home' breezes over without any real impact but leads the way for single 'Time On My Hands' which is by no means re-inventing the wheel but is a good slab of pop. Album highlight 'Run To Her' pops up next and is an absolute gem demanding your ears pay attention. 'Number Again' is a brilliant laidback song and really makes singer Antony work to bring extra tenderness. 'Skin Deep' has a killer little riff and rumbles on at a moderate pace until the chorus kicks in but doesn't have a cutting edge to it.
The thing with this album is that it doesn't have the urgency that records by the Libertines or any of their follow-ons do but this is no bad thing. In fact moving across the pond has paid of as otherwise TFH may have been dismissed as just another wave of Doherty/Barat wannabes. It just seems a little laboured.
Don't get me wrong this is a good album but there's so much similarity throughout. The verses are quiet, the song is set up lyrically until the chorus kicks in. It's just the same on every song. There doesn't seem much variation in song-writing. Just repetition of one line in the chorus, and verse, chorus, verse throughout. A good first outing to get the feet under the table but next time there's gotta be more variation.