Saturday, 13 March 2010

My Albatross

Live and Live Lonely/ Rich Man's Daughter
Blue Cat Records
Rating: 4/5

So here we are: a double 'A' of the first two singles by exceptional Manchester alt-folk rock band My Albatross. 'Live and Live Lonely', a ukulele-led number driven by a persistent snare motif is the one that really sticks in the mind, with Dave's lead vocals winding their way pleasurably around the instruments. Impeccable vocal harmonies and a gentle climax round off the track into a cut that is frankly nothing short of infectious.

'Rich Man's Daughter', the 'AA', offers an insight into the other half of their sound- with guitars at the fore, it's somewhere in the region of Brakes or Crimea in feel, with Who-style flourishes deep in the mix. My only criticism would be that it ends rather too soon- there's a middle eight with a nice Radiohead-style octave chord solo riff, but more could have been made of the ending. Perhaps. I think given that I tend towards unnecessarily long instrumental outros, it's probably a good sign for My Albatross that this is something I picked up on.

Overall this pair of tracks display impressively tight songwriting, superb vocals and a subtle use of simple melodies which too many bands seem to eschew these days in favour of overcomplication or simple atonality. Not the most original perhaps, but certainly refreshing to hear.

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