The Deadline Fever

Benjamin Short 03/07/2006

Rating: 3/5

Since the demise of The Verve in 1999, Wigan has spent seven years in the musical wilderness, but now, The Deadline Fever could be set to change all that. On 'Footprints' vocalist Chris Fallows performs an impressive imitation of Liam Gallagher, which is unsurprising given The Deadline Fever's somewhat embarrassing past incarnation as a pub-rock covers band. From here on in, things take a sharp turn for the better. As proved by Led Zeppelin and Guns 'n' Roses, a shouty chorus and a squealing guitar solo can change the world, and this simple formula is the basis for 'Beatfreak'. On 'The Paper It Was Written On', The Deadline Fever reveal their disdain for journalists (“the truth tells lies when it's written in a magazine”), but it is impossible to feel spiteful towards a band who can switch from powerchord dynamite to acoustic introspection in a single sublime moment. The canned applause on track four, a remix of 'Beatfreak', is an unnecessary touch. Intended to give the impression of stadium adoration, it comes across as unwarranted narcissism. Yet nonetheless, The Deadline Fever are a band who wear their hearts on their sleeves, and not in a faux-sincere emo way. Their influences (Oasis, Weller et al) may be unfashionable, but if you like your music direct and uncomplicated, then it's about time you became part of their ever-increasing fanbase.