The Golden Age - Demo

Bill Cummings 25/09/2005

Rating: 3/5

What has Sheffield ever given the world? Steel works? The Full Monty? Pulp? A Cricket Captain (Michael Vaughan) who can actually guide The England team to victory in the Ashes? Yes, all of those things. But now it's giving us a fistful of great diverse and interesting bands. Whether it's the rush of the female fronted post punk-pop of The Long Blondes, the shambling jangling melodies of Bromhead's Jacket and Umlaut or the sheer unmistakable tunesmithery of The Harrisons, the Sheffield music scene seems to be bursting at the seams with great music. Christ, even the NME is on board now (a year behind GIITTV zine, I might add). What's so great about the Sheffield scene is that each band is different: this isn't a bandwagon, it's a set of fiercely independent and exciting bands. The Golden Age are another example of the brilliance that Sheffield is currently pouring forth, like hot molten lather all over the banality of the likes of Keane, Snow Patrol, Coldplay and Blunt.

The Golden Age inhabit and expose the darker underbelly of Sheffield life: nights out getting pissed on White Lightning, fumbles in the dark and the hope and despair that goes with living in their home town. They create a sound that resides somewhere between the melodic tenacity of Morrissey's solo work, and Suede's dark, sexually glamorous indie.

The precocious melody to opener Flouxetina sounds oddly like “Have You Seen Her” by Chilights (Or MC Hammer, depending upon your era) being twisted as the brand of antidepressant is given duel meaning of as a lovelorn melody (“Oh Flouxetina/Have you seen her/Have you been there?”). This is reminiscent of the way Brett Anderson used to use metaphors and elude to double meanings within his lyrics for example Animal Nitrate contained allusions to the sexual, and narcotic.

“Used To Be A Stripper” has elements of The Futureheads in its stop-start verse and funky bass and angular serrated guitars, it then rips forth into a soaring chorus worthy of one Stephen Patrick Morrissey.

Last up is the rather witty “Girl You Like Cock Too Much” it's a sleazy tale of girl who puts out too much, insistent guitars push along the whimsical Morrisseyisms of the vocal, the pre chorus brings a chortle (“You can suck a golf ball through a garden hose!”) before unveiling a tuneful chorus and sparky riff.

This is just a demo so it has its rough edges. Maybe the vocals could be higher in the mix and the sound could be polished, but I won't nitpick. This shows enough potential to expect The Golden Age to strike forth, and conquer. They say it best themselves: Sheffield is where they “grew up, it is here that they live and it is from here from which The Golden Age draws its inspiration.”