Comebacks this year from The Chemical Brothers and Oasis have both been greeted with the question of relevancy. Are these two bands that made some of the most important music of the 90s any use in today's age of retro American guitar bands and sarf larndarn garage? This is a situation that affords Gomez, as they were never even relevant to start with. Gomez are a band without any contemporaries or scenes, and they're as important now as they ever were. In fact, with bands such as The White Stripes and fellow Merseyside residents The Coral providing the white man blues with a resurgence, Gomez's third album 'In Our Gun' could see them become bigger and more loved than ever before. But this of course all depends on one thing: Is it any good?
Yes, in fact it's very good. With this album, Gomez have cut away all the noodling, and have developed a much tighter, rigid sound. It's also a lot subtler; there are less soaring choruses and catchy tunes. 'In Our Gun'** is an album that to appreciate fully has to be listened to in it's entirety. Tracks such as 'Even Song' and 'Ping One Down' hardly cry to be played individually, yet in the context of the album they make perfect sense.
One down side is that there is not much progression here. But why should Gomez forsake such gems as 'Sound Of Sounds' or 'The Ballad Of Nice And Easy' in the face of evolution? ’Miles End’ could be something Paul Mcartney did in the late 60’s, while ’Army Dub’ sounds like The Beta Band. So in the two predominant areas of this album, the acoustic based and the dance influenced, they are excelling. And while we are talking The Beta Band rather than some obscure Warp act, it’s a start. Gomez are a band that will be making albums for years to come (Cue for them to break up next week…), so the heavy progression may take some time but it will most likely be worth it. But if album number four is **’In Our Gun Mk II’, there’ll be moider to pay.
8Tom Carlin's Score