The Maccabees - Colour It In

Stas Werno 16/05/2007

Rating: 4/5

Imagine what early Bloc Party would have sounded like, if they'd have had more of a feel good vibe about them, were fronted by Droopy Dogg - you now have a mental picture of The Maccabees debut album. Ignore what you've read about them being the new trendy "Art Rock" band in town, there's nothing arty about them, they simply make great guitar pop.

It's so easy to sound generic doing what they do, but The Maccabees really pull it off with their own refreshingly distinct twist. 'Good Old Bill' opens the album with beautifully floaty guitars meandering around jerky marching drums only to surprise us by upping the tempo into a bouncy sing along of "ooh's". Before we even know where we are, we get thrown into already established track 'X-Ray', a perfect sign of what's to come elsewhere on the album. The forceful energy and catchy hooks apparent in the track emerge regularly throughout, particularly in the form of highlights 'Tissue Shoulders', 'First Love' and 'Latchmere' - you wouldn't think it possible to write a fantastically crafted and lyrically superb song about swimming in a Latchmere pool, but somehow they just make it work.

The album is, however, not quite perfect. At times it can feel like you've accidentally put it on repeat as the less inventive tracks start to sound the same, gently fading into background music. Thankfully it's not long before something comes along that grabs you and knocks your brain back into gear, reminding you of what attracted you to the band in the first place.

Out: 14/05/2007