|価格:||￥ 2,007 通常配送無料 詳細|
Long Blondes - Couples - Cd
The Long Blondes have had a makeover. Which might seem par for the course considering their fiery, acclaimed debut album Someone to Drive You Home saw their sense of retro chic kept at least equivalent to their Sheffield Blondie shtick. But they emerge from the inter-album dry-ice expanse devoid of many of those rough edges that defined and made them so alluring in the first instance--more Jackie Onassis than Oxfam--friends and family stand agog at the transformation. They're certainly no less sassy, au contraire, but there is a new found seriousness all over Couples. Last time, beneath their second-generation Britpop wrapping and Elastica/Pulp impulses, snuck a sense of synthesised control evoking hometown forbearers Heaven 17. This time around that impression is flipped. The clean lines and neon minimalism of "Century" and "Round the Hairpin" are more Ladytron than typical Long Blondes and "Too Clever By Half", essentially a husky falsetto prevented from floating off into the ether by a slow, sultry bass-line, is so slick it could be mistaken for recent ultra-stylised Kylie. The brilliant, full-throttle Roxy Music glam rattling of "I'm Going to Hell" is a reasonable meeting-point between the two albums, but their tight command of the musical onslaught is now quite arresting. This new-found sophistication, coupled with Erol Alkan's tremendously vibrant production, ensures that Couples probably does come out as twice the album to its predecessor. --James Berry
Lead single "Century" is about as New Wave as you can get in 2008, with Jackson sounding like Debbie Harry reborn and the music all Depeche Mode synths and bubbly bass lines. "Guilt" and "The Couples" continues the album's theme of tragic relationships, but unlike the weepy Cure-mimicking love songs common in the New Wave-revival scene, Jackson is merciless and acidic towards her ex's, defiantly proclaiming "guilt has nothing to do with it" to a dumped boyfriend.
Couples unfortunately slows down around the midway point, however, with songs like "Round the Hairpin" and "Too Clever By Half" meandering off into showy drum work and the kind of slow balladry that only stunts the album's momentum. Half of an album of excellent songs and Jackson's distinctive vocals, however, are more than most bands can offer today.