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Books From Boxes by Maximo Park

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Reviewed on 29th May 2007.


Books From Boxes

By Maximo Park

Maximo Park need very little introduction - to have missed the success of their debut album, A Certain Trigger, full of their own self-styled indie, would be a miracle. The new single, "Books from Boxes" comes from their 'difficult second album' released this year.

While not having got my mitts on the new album, it's thankfully true that the single absolutely avoids all of the criticisms that could be aimed at it. The Maximo Park trademarks are still gloriously present: Books from Boxes boasts the same huge number of hooks as any of the beloved A Certain Trigger tracks, as well as the charming quaintness they possessed. There is no seismic movement towards the commercial or more accessible. Neither is it stuck in the rut of repetition - they seem rather to have progressed towards a more mature and sage Maximo Park, with an even more definite air of the beautiful melancholy that was previously only hinted at. Think an even more desperate and disenchanted version of "The Coast Is Always Changing" and with a little more counterpoint, and that will give a fair idea of "Books from Boxes".

I could rave incessantly merely in reaction to the broken chord intro, which is a fantastic moment of melodic genius from Duncan Lloyd - a gorgeous musical statement despite, or arguably largely due to, its simplicity. The keyboard part is much less invasive than in the older material, also infected by a certain wisdom which certainly pervaded the joyfully raucous licks of "A Certain Trigger". Lyrically, Paul Smith's vocals have as much authority and bright little turns of phrase as ever, and show no embarrassing signs of the 'second album syndrome' whatsoever.

The change of feel in the middle 8 is executed flawlessly, and the contrast of the pragmatic lyrics and positive instrumental parts to the plaintive tone of the chorus makes the return to the chorus hook all the more poignant.

There's a distinct lack of points to criticise in "Books from Boxes" (making my task here entirely obsolete!); that is, apart from the fact that its inexhaustible charm means it's easy to keep pressing that repeat button and neglect the rest of your record collection.



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On 29th May 2007 at 20:05 Anonymous 6562 wrote...



On 30th May 2007 at 08:22 Anonymous 30 wrote...

Good single but personally the album is not as daring and a little too well formed. Me thinks a bigger budget and more time has reduced some of urgency.



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