Straight out of University and into the clutches of Guy Garvey. Sounds quite promising, if a little too out of the frying pan and into the fire to be totally convincing.
Nevertheless, that pretty much sums up the story of Liverpool based trio Peter And The Wolf, none of whom are called Peter incidentally, or indeed have four legs or an excessive amount of canine instincts (not to mention fanged teeth).
The current line-up came together two years ago and has been writing and recording songs ever since. Mostly, it has to be said, using minimalist, if slightly unconventional sounds where percussion instruments such as the triangle and the glockenspiel are the new rock'n'roll, and the instinctive sea chantey about doing nothing ('Killing Time') and nothing doing (check 'Mercy' and its "Living in a memory..." catchphrase) is the be all and end all of musical virtuosity.
Is that a bad thing? Not really if you can summon up the energy to listen to a whole record coated in similar themes, and to be fair Storyteller, at just six tracks and sixteen minutes in length, is hardly heavy going at the best of times.
As well as recalling obvious peers such as The Zutons and The Coral, it is also quite obvious that main protagonists Marc Sunderland and Donna Dosanjh know their underground lo-fi pretty well, as some of the vocal harmonies and role reversal/interplay throughout this record are a pleasure on the ears. 'Lover Scorned' is just about the most uptempo, beat driven ditty you'll hear all year about being dumped.
In fact, with the aforementioned Garvey behind the desk this debut release sounds more accomplished than anyone could have hoped to expect. The only downside is a lack of variation in the songs, but hopefully that will come with time.
Peter And The Wolf then - full of northwestern promise.
6Dom Gourlay's Score