Ultimate Painting is a bit of a side project, taking up the personal time of Jack Cooper of Mazes and James Hoare of Veronica Falls. Here on Green Lanes they get to kick back a little from the driving indie-rock formula, making low-key lyrically-focused tracks until the cows come home. Out on Trouble In Mind.
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Imagine a cheery Lou Reed strutting down Stoke Newington high street on a sunny Wednesday morning. “How ya doin’ Mr Postman”, “Good to see you Mr Dealer”, he’s full of vitality as he flips an apple in the air. This is the image that Jack Cooper (Mazes) and James Hoare (Veronica Falls) manage to conjure up on the breezy ‘Kodiak’ which opens this excellent second album by the group.
They have an insouciant charm and three songs into the album they could have you believe that nothing really matters after all. It's raining? So what - as long as you can sit and listen to the Velvet Underground’s third album over and over again then life is sweet. What I like about this is that despite them coming from Manchester and London respectively, their Englishness doesn’t supress their cool. On tracks like ‘The Ocean’ they channel the sunnier end of the Clean’s catalogue with some twisty turny guitars intertwining beautifully. Elsewhere they are as laid back as Mac Demarco on the carefree ‘Two From the Vault’.
It’s a really sweet album that has been released just at the right time. If this damn weather picks up it’s going to sound even better.
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