The Scottish indie troupe’s difficult second album Kicks has come up trumps by having three good songs, a whopping three more than their debut, which had precisely none.
Going for a Diet Primal Scream or Stoneslite sound, the first half of the albums is carried out with so little conviction you’ll want to physically shake it to make something happen. If they don’t seem to care, why should you?
The saving grace comes in the form of two songs sifting smack being in the middle of the record (the horribly titled but well mannered “Balthazar” being the best) and the politely nice ender, “Sparks”. Where it succeeds, it has the breezy grace of Teenage Fanclub.
When it fails it sounds like soggy musicians are playing it in slow motion in a limp competition. As strong a case for cherry picking downloads as any. – Tom C.