8/10 Penrith Steve Customer review, 5th November 2014
This is one of the better, if not the best, post-Britpop albums. I was never a fan of Britpop but bands like The Electric Soft Parade (AKA Alex and Thomas White), purposefully or otherwise, were riding its coat-tails when this was released in 2002. Due to their penchant for a catchy melody, there’s probably more in common with Teenage Fanclub than any of the Britpop clique.
There are songs here with big choruses, “Empty at the End” and “There’s A Silence” are both fantastic sing-a-long indie pop songs. I seem to remember that they were only teenagers when they released this which makes the achievement even more remarkable.
The album’s centerpiece is “Silent to the Dark” which is 9 minutes of glorious melody and swooning psychedelia.
In among all of these uplifting and vibrant choruses they throw in some melancholia too “It’s Wasting Me Away” shows a different side to the White brothers, albeit beautifully melodic. “Why Do You Try So Hard to Hate Me” has a more snarling, rocky sound coupled with gentler, spacey passages.
I dismissed The Electric Soft Parade at the time (without hearing them) as I thought they were just another “next big thing” being pushed by a huge corporation (BMG). So a few months later I took a punt after hearing more positive things. It’s a very good album that still stands up 12 years later. Instead of doing what everyone else does, like buying a Radiohead album for instance, give this a go.
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