On Monday  my favourite band release their third/second album (even I’m confused) and this is what I think

1. IN MEDIAS RES

The most perfect start that you could possibly ever dream for, sounds like the opening to a long and exciting story which of course it is. After you hear Gareth ramble on about rolling down a lay-by the song then changes into a different beast in which it breaks down into this dark experimental piece, before picking back up into a beautiful finale complete with new and exciting brass section which turns the song into a mini epic.

Favourite Lyric: “If you were given the option of dying painlessly in peace at 45, But with a lover at your side, after a full and happy life, Is this something that would interest you?

2. THERE ARE LISTED BUILDINGS

The obvious choice for lead single to be honest in an album full of non-singley songs. Complete with more brass, sometime when I listen to this it either comes across as being a little lacklustre or just a great pop song. Thankfully when I listen to it it’s usually the later way I feel about it. This time Gareth’s singing about some trip out to the seaside yet he doesn’t bag the girl as per usual. This song also highlights the more sparse sound the band have gone for without all the instruments clashing and just creating a racket. This time they all get their own little moments of glory, which for me at least is a good change.

Favourite Lyric: “you dangle fishing line for crabs, but they’re not interested, I’m your only bite”

3. ROMANCE IS BORING

The title track and obvious choice for second single. This however is probably my least favourite song on the album but every song is good so it doesn’t really matter. RIB packs in plenty of punchy guitar noise as well as plenty of punchy vocals and a very sing-a-longable chorus. Can’t help but think that Aleks sounds like Kate Jackson from The Long Blondes in this.

Favourite Lyric: “You’re trying not to be nervous, If you were trying at all”

4: WE’VE GOT YOUR BACK (DOCUMENTED MINOR EMOTIONAL BREAKDOWN #2)

Great little female lead intro leading into wanna of the best refrains on the album, you’ll see me singing “I’ve learnt more from toilet walls, than I’ve learnt from these words of yours”. Rings true with a lot of people i know. Ending in this beautiful little breakdown before…

5: PLAN A

BAM!!! It’s full on musical assault that the kind you won’t of heard from LC! before. A 2 minute rush of riot grrl punk about how Gareth’s moves to Malta so he can be part of the Maltese National Football team it may sound ridiculous but it’s not really as he still turns into an affectionate love song through all the screaming.

Key Lyric: “I hand them a photograph of you the most beautiful thing that I’d seen”

6: 200-01

Short little instrumental does it job of breaking down the album well

7: STRAIGHT IN AT 101

Ironically the same number in which it entered itunes this week. Often found this a little repetitive on early listens yet it sounds so much better cranking out of my stereo, yo. Has a certain edginess to it that absolutely love especially at the start of the first verse with helped by Gareth’s slick delivered vocals spoken over urgent sounding guitars throughout. Lyrically one of the stand out tracks Gareth once again contemplating romance, relationships etc. And also lyrically builds upon themes from its predecessor.

Key Lyric: “I think we need more post-coital and less post-rock, feels like the build up takes for ever but you never touch my cock

8: WHO FELL ASLEEP IN

Probably the most beautiful song that LC! have ever written. It conveys all the emotion need both lyrically and musically for it to be the most perfect tender love song of 2010. As always Harriet’s violin playing is impeccable to say the least only adding to the immense beauty of it all. Gareth once again spot on lyrically absolutely no going back to the days of ‘It Started With a Mixx’ and thank god because this is undoubtedly LC! at their best. Oh, and how could i forget that background vocals are from the gorgeous sounding Zac Pennington.

Key Lyric: “I don’t mean to be selfish; but I’d just sooner be dead”

9: I WARNED YOU: DO NOT MAKE AN ENEMY OF ME

The fun times are back with this track a bit like Plan A’s less shout older brother. Includes probably my favourite chorus throughout the album. Sadly the song as a whole struggles to contend with the others and I often feel that no matter how much I love it that it probably should have been left out as a b-side.

Key Lyric: “But if this changed your life, did you have one before?”

10: HEART SWELLS/100-01

Another little intro song but manages to cushion the blow before this tour de force…

11: I JUST SIGHED. I JUST SIGHED, JUST SO YOU KNOW

Lyrically this is my favourite track on the album describing Gareth’s’ attempt to win the heart of this girl (Charlotte) by writing “eulogy’s in desk books of galleries” and “displaying marriage proposals on the jumbotrons of ball games you’ve not been at”. All of which made even better by the furious energy built up behind him like his building up to asking her if he could be the one “to keep track of the freckles and the moles on your back”. In one last huge blow to win her heart. This probably fails.

12: A HEART RASH IN THE PERFECT SHAPE OF THE SHOW ME STATE; OR LETTERS FROM ME TO CHARLOTTE

The album just seems to go from strength to strength this however manages to capture the elements of all the songs on the album perfectly the perfect mix of energy and emotion. Plenty of swooning strings once again courtesy of Harriet and quite probably the most personal song to Gareth on the album. Don’t usually like brass instruments but the horns that are used here just sound brilliant

Key Lyric: “And how the frequent public displays of sisterly affection, Left her feeling safe, left him with an erection”

13: THE SEA IS A GOOD PLACE TO THINK OF THE FUTURE

The first song that anyone got to hear from the album is ironically the best and possibly my all time favourite LC! song. Dark and incredibly moving thanks to Gareth’s intensely delivered vocals and brilliant narrative. Then there’s the music building up thanks to off-beat experimental drumming, cutting guitar thanks to the ebow a great piece of equipment that is used throughout the record. All this built up towards a massive chorus in what is one absolutely epic piece of music.

Key Lyric: “This thing hurts like hell, but what did you expect”

14: THIS IS A FLAG. THERE IS NO WIND

For me probably the only song that could have fit on either of the previous two records and reminds me a little bit of ‘Documented Minor Emotional Breakdown #1″ from WAB, WAD. Probably because it stands out as being one of the more poppy songs on the album and has more shouting from everyone and the glockenspiel makes a welcome return just like on the finale…

Key Lyric: “In an analogy that makes sense to most, This opportunity it found me unmarked at the far post”

15: CODA: A BURN SCAR IN THE SHAPE OF THE SOONER STATE

Certainly the darkest song LC! have ever written but I’m still waiting to here ‘Too Many Flesh Suppers’. The imagery of this song is just so strong, I could even be standing in the shower with Gareth. Easily the most heart wrenchingly tender track  you’ll hear throughout the album. Helped only the sounds of some sort of automated drum machine and some lovely background growling. The perfect end to a near perfect album.

Key Lyric: I’m down on my knees, my pissed soaked jeans, the first time the last time, all the times in-between, the first time, the last time, all the times i would of liked there to have been”

James x

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