Fate saved the biggest disappointment of the year for the last week of 2019 with this turgid offering. The Guardian praised it for its sonic richness, for people who prefer melody and softness to, presumably, tunes, variety and enjoyment.
The band has garnered good reviews for some time so we were looking forward to this, but it’s somewhat of a let-down. It’s all of one sound, that being downbeat self-pity and misery, and the vocals consistently anodyne and androgynous.
We looked at the lyrics for redeeming features but there were none. They seem to be either nonsense or about sex, the narrator a narcissist who loves only himself. In the nonsense category are lines such as “You make me think of storms on the beaches / With all the lights off” or “I just want to see you upside down”. Eh? In one song he warns a lover that “My heart just can’t be faithful for long / I swear I’ll only make you cry” but in another goes for a little cry in the shower himself when a girl says she just wants to be friends. It’s not only the shower curtain that’s limp and wet round his house.
In another song he says his prowess is so good that “you beg for it in the morning again before you go to the gym”; he’s so good they forget to turn off the telly before getting it on; one feels swordsmen have lowered their standards somewhat since the days of Casanova, from his “I have loved women even to madness” to “we forgot the turn the telly off”.
Pish, as they say in Glasgow.
Support your local record shop! If you’ve not got one, support us (an independent newspaper) and buy this from here: