English trio Sarandon’s latest album is a sweeping 32-track affair compiling the band’s four mini albums. At 32 songs it’s an epic, er, 44-minute album! Yes, these songs barely squeak over a minute and are of the crisp, angular rock variety a la Gang of Four and especially The Futureheads if they learned their craft in a garage. Songs such as “Pin Up” and “Birds” are well-crafted, bouncy, punchy ditties while “Frank” seems to up the ante somewhat with its quirkiness. Singer and guitarist Crayola shines on the frantic and hellacious “Bored” that sounds like a British version of The Hives. As with any 32-track album, there are some miscues such as the aptly titled “Hiccup”, but “Politique” quickly redeems those errors, even if they sing about licking legs and loving oranges. “Mavis” meanwhile resembles an unfinished Arctic Monkeys b-side while “Don’t Say No” is a horn-tinged, fun-filled rave-up romp. Second half gems include “Manky” and “Health” with its precise groove and rat-a-tat-tat drumming. Another sleeper pick is “Kitten” that picks things up again after some rather ordinary tunes while “Angela” could be mistaken for Guided By Voices.
// Notes from the Road
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