Amazing Baby: Rewild

When UK bands were crashing on American shores during the Britpop boom of the mid ’90s, it made sense that Pulp would have a more difficult time making the transfer than some of their contemporaries. Singer Jarvis Cocker’s lyrics were steeped in class warfare and bedroom politics, meaning that most American teenagers wouldn’t quite understand what it meant to live like common people. Flash-forward a dozen years or so, and Brooklyn band Amazing Baby, born from the ashes of several other Brooklyn bands, lets their Pulp flag fly on Rewild, and the results are intoxicating. Ringing guitar lines, breathy but deathly serious vocals and pogo-friendly drum beats abound, but Amazing Baby are no knockoff band; Pulp, for example, would never have written “The Narwhal,” though Supergrass might have. After enduring band after band of self-absorbed ninnies, to see a group like Amazing Baby actually enjoying themselves is a sight for sore eyes. More, please. (Shangri-La 2009)

Amazing Baby MySpace page


The Hours: See the Light

They would surely bristle at the idea that their songs are of the throwback variety, but the simple fact is that there aren’t many, if any, bands writing the kind of music that propels See the Light, the magnificent new album by UK duo (or is it septet?) the Hours. Singer Antony Genn’s phrasing recalls Wonder Stuff frontman Miles Hunt (though Genn is a much better singer), and the songs are flat-out skyscrapers, gorgeous piano-driven epics that put the ‘wide’ in widescreen. “Come On” uses seven words to create one of the catchiest choruses you’ll hear this year, while the seven-minute title track is a brilliant, two-chord slow burner, like a mid-tempo version of Pulp’s “Common People” (which is fitting, since Genn is a Pulp alumnus). There is a lyrical gaffe here and there – “The Girl Who Had the World at Her Feet” opens with the line “The cash cow is heading for the slaughterhouse,” ugh – but such bits come with the territory, and their damage is minimal. Don’t be surprised if these guys become a very big deal in a very short amount of time. (IsGoodLtd 2009)

The Hours MySpace page
Click to buy See the Light


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