Saturday 25 February 2012

Review: Dodgy

Dodgy - Stand Upright In A Cool Place (Strike Back Records)
Dodgy - not the most positive name for a band, though I doubt it made much difference to their career, even if they were always much underrated. I remember hearing "In A Room" for the first time and deciding that I wouldn’t hear anything better that year (1996). Never a band that was feted, Dodgy just did what they did, making some cracking indie rock records during the Britpop era. The same thing seemed to happen to Compulsion as well, another band with an ear for a tune that somehow never quite scaled the heights that would make them a household name.

This new album underlines their prowess with melody and arrangements. Dodgy have always been good value; their songs are full, well-rounded affairs, delivered with a professionalism that’s even greater now than back in their heyday. "Did It Have To Be This Way" is a perfect example of what this band are all about, with chiming, classic harmonies, poignant, personal lyrics, and a deft touch with the instrumentation. Great pop songs don't get much better than this. There are eleven on here, this one just happens to be the best, just edging out "What became Of You" and the glorious closer "Happy Ending" (let's hope it is... but not just yet…).

I doubt new fans will be queuing round the block to hear this, but I fear that’s Dodgy's fate. Anyone with a keen ear for really fine melodies and sharp writing will probably already know what to expect, and will hopefully check this out. Please do so, and do what I’ve just done, and intend to continue to do: spread the word that Dodgy never were dodgy, and never will be. They’re just a class act.
Kev A.

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