Wednesday, 14 March 2012
Review: The Cathode Ray
The Cathode Ray - S/T (Stereogram Recordings)
You have to wait until the fifth track “Lost and Found” calmly kicks in before anything actually reaches out to grab you. When it does it’s a pleasant sensation, the sort of feeling that Edwyn Collins is able to project through his songs. In fact "Lost And Found", and "Creature Of Habit" both lean heavily towards the ex-Orange Juice man. Before this it’s an undecided affair, with the delayed vocals on the lead track "Patience Is A Virtue" perhaps revealing the problem. It’s almost two minutes into this ordinary indie pop song before the vocal appears and it’s as if they couldn’t decide who should take up the vocal duties. Jeremy Thoms and Steve Fraser must have agreed to share the job, though they appear to do so reluctantly. Even the guest vocal of Paul Haig (who has collaborated significantly with The Cathode Ray band over the years) doesn’t help, although this somewhat iconic artist enhances the later tracks by his presence. It’s a similar state of affairs until "Lost..." brings joy and vibrancy to the proceedings.
It is a wake up call for anyone listening, and from thereon this rather dull undertaking is transformed. It’s as if the band shook off a grey cloak and adopted a shiny new suit instead. They simply go from strength to strength, washing away the memory of those earlier tracks in their wake, as these tender anthems pull you gently apart.
Posted by Bangs at 3/14/2012 11:42:00 am