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I blathered on long enough about The Verlaines ‘Juvenilia’ last week so if you want a full resume of their brilliance look here. This one was their first album proper (‘Juvenilia’ being a collection of early singles) and its noticeably better produced, fuller and richer, the more upbeat tracks really spin along at a fair old rate of knots.
They have a tremendously energetic strum and at times you could imagine them crossing over to the kind of ‘big music’ performed by the likes of The Waterboys around the same era. You can also really hear the influence on the early Wedding Present on the likes of ‘Lying In State’ which blasts through on a sea of layered strummed acoustics. They were always too oddball though to head down the straight guitar rock path though, the songs have all manner of stops and starts and some of the wierdest chords imaginable.
There are some odd anomalies to the autumnal strum; ‘Don’t Send Me Away’ for example sounds just like Yorkshire raconteur Jake Thackray. Although the songs are perhaps not quite up to the standard of the best bits of ‘Juvenilia’, there are plenty of rich pickings here for fans of lop sided guitar music. Here’s hoping their later albums get similar re-issue treatment soon.
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