Flake Music were a band James Mercer was in just before he started the Shins. They were more collaborative than the Shins which were started as a vehicle for his own songwriting. However, this will appeal to fans of those great early Shins albums. It's slightly more solid indie rock sounding than whimsical 60's stuff but Mercer's wandering way with a melody is fully intact.
8/10 Ian Staff review, 19 November 2014
This is the band that was to eventually become The Shins way back in 1997. This was the only full length album they released under the Flake Music name (the original '97 pressing goes for around 40 quid these days!). Straight from the off you can tell it’s James Mercer on vocal duties, kind of like a more indie rock Shins really. Remember that nineties era when american indie was all the rage here with bands like Pavement, Dinosaur Jr, Buffalo Tom etc? It’s all college rock guitars and slacker vocals which give it an instant classic sound to it and with poppy catchy hooks all over the place which stick in your head immediately.
I always wanted to be in a band like this when I was a young skamp because the mix of rock energy with melodic riffs and sing-along lyrics - it looked like so much fun. Unfortunately I got old and grumpy and mostly listen to brooding post-rock these days but I still love a good old bouncy indie-pop album like this. Essential!
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