Various - Singles Round-Up 01/03/2010

Simon Jay Catling 03/03/2010

An abridged version of our increasingly hallowed singles round-up I'm afraid, dear readers. The rigours of pulling a degree out the bag after two years of general clowning around have sadly caught up with me this week (a LOT of Football Manager has been played since 2007…) Handily for us, Richard Wink has made like a single reviewing machine, and so a couple of his reviews feature here, as well as some collated others, and I've squeezed in time between trying to win the Champions League with Charlton Athletic to recommend one of my own. I shall endeavour to resume normal service next week.

What we've reviewed that's out this week:

Archie Bronson Outfit- Shark's Tooth (Domino)- 4/5
"Archie Bronson Outfit are a consistent band, they almost come with a guarantee that whatever they release won't suck. Today, in this indifferent, eclectic age such a guarantee is priceless." Full review here.
The Boy Who Trapped The Sun- Home EP (Chess Club)- 3/5
"Given time, The Boy Who Trapped the Sun can hopefully come to terms with his natural ability and perhaps take a second look at the misguiding implications his promotional team deliver; until then, Home will do." Full review here.
Gaggle- I Hear Flies (Transgressive)- 4/5
"With so many voices exploding all at once, Gaggle are a disorientating proposition, almost impossible to analyze, but vitally they are different." Full review here.
Motion Picture Soundtrack- Glass Figures (Columbia)- 0/5
"turgid, sterile, wooden spoon of a single." Full review here.
Pixie Lott- Gravity (Mercury)- 3.5/5
"Gravity displays vocal power, some fantastic songwriting and a video where eye-catching is an understatement. The chorus line is as catchy as any on the album and the single on the whole suggests Pixie will be a long-lasting pop act." Full review here.
With That Knife- This Place, A Thousand Times- 4/5
"they seem to have found a focus, and have channelled their many influences into something undeniably theirs" Full review here.
Zebra & Snake- Colours EP (Kitsune)- 5/5
"Utterly brilliant." Full review here.


Chris T-T- Nintendo (Xtramile Recordings)

I'm actually a late comer to the music of Chris T-T and only became aware of the man when he performed on the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square as part of Anthony Gormley's One & Other art project. The kind of people who either performed, or looked lost on the plinth were mostly desperate people, many were fame hungry, desperate to be noticed, desperate to get on TV and be critiqued by Clive Anderson and an assortment of D-List guests (and that ever so wacky Turner prize winning artist who dresses like a ragdoll). Chris T-T got on TV.

It's a shame the project wasn't vetted, not in an X-Factor audition kind of way, but more to stop the time wasters, and those seeking that clichéd Warholian fifteen minutes of fame, or in the case of appearing on the plinth, one hour of fame. As a self confessed fan of Gormley, perhaps T-T's motives were more genuine then some and that promoting his music was merely coincidental; though the cynic in me worries that desperation is starting to come through in his music.

'Nintendo' is yet another blustering slab of overwrought posturing from another singer songwriter plodding away on the harsh touring trail. For a veteran, seven albums into his career, hundreds of songs written, you hope that the first single for a new album is an enticing one. 'Nintendo' seems like a desperate plea to get included in a family orientated Wii advert. Imagine Ant and Dec, all smiles with their arms wrapped around a family from Bolton as they jostle each other during a fiercely contested game of Mario Kart with T-T serenading them in the background, sitting at a grand piano. (1/5)
- Richard Wink


The Ruby Suns- Cranberry (Memphis Industries)

Remember The Ruby Suns, fun time New Zealand collective with jolly ramshackle pop, punnerific song titles and an overall sense of genial exoticism? Well that still exists, but with it now has come an increased sense of a group wanting to hit the dance floor. Yes, like their musical contemporaries Yeasasyer, The Ruby Suns have made the step from oddball world music influenced grooves to outgoing floor-filling hooks and rhythms. And it works. The dense electronic textures of 'Cranberry' are a wonderful teaser for the new album, mixing seamlessly with the easy charm the Kiwis have had in abundance since 2007's Sea Lion. Wonderful stuff. (4/5)
- Simon Jay Catling