Neat People - Standing Next To Rose

Alex Worsnip 14/08/2006

Rating: 3/5

This single sounds like it can't quite decide what it wants to be. Opening with a ridiculous guitar theme that sounds like it could be the theme tune to a game show, it bursts into a verse that is a bit like The Futureheads if they ditched all pretensions to trendyness and simply aped XTC at their absolute poppiest (which was, actually, despite the fact that they keep getting cited as influences on very angular and alternative bands, very poppy indeed). But then it breaks down into a harmonic, ringing chorus that is all floaty, dreamy indie, a little bit Bloc Party (in their 'So Here We Are' kind of mode), actually quite fey. The cumulative effect is that of something relatively intriguing, though its not quite the "blow against the carbon copy posturing of too-cool-for-school indie boys" that the press release claims: it actually sounds quite of its moment. On the negative side, it perhaps doesn't quite have the instantly memorable tune that makes this kind of music totally effective, and which anything poppy and silly needs to get away with it. But this is a respectable release which will no doubt raise a few eyebrows.