The Futureheads and Maximo Park may have rather stolen the North Eastern thunder from local peers This Aint Vegas, but the latter’s album of a couple of years back, The Black Lung Captain, was never paying dues to the first wave of the new wave a la the aforementioned chart botherers. Rather, TAV’s approach was one indebted to the alternative ways of the USA, more specifically the impassioned punk and hardcore of the DC scene. ‘Escape’ is a marked progression from the band’s debut album material - frontman Adam Rose hollers with an almost unhinged sense of confidence, whilst band mates flex previously underdeveloped musical muscles. Melodies remain the most important factor in this formula, taking precedence over the jarring and sparring relationship between angular guitars and strained vocals, but never is aggression tempered for a tempting buck or two, something that can’t be said of this quartet’s geographical brethren.
‘The Onlookers Surround’ is a less frantic affair than its flipside, but nevertheless smacks of an all-too-obvious confidence. Paired vocals - call and response style - are far more effective when delivered crisply (unlike so many post-whatever screamo noisy boys), and the tune throughout flows straight and true.
Those ‘in the know’ won’t need telling, but for those that aren’t: this is a must-have release, so go get.
9Mike Diver's Score