Thursday, 18 September 2008

'King El

Yes - I did write most of this last month, but I finally got round to finishing it. I don't know how often I'll review stuff, whether it will be new or old, or even if I'll do it again, but I just thought I'd throw this out there.

The Wedding Present released their seventh studio album, El Rey recently. As a huge Weddoes fan, this can only be a good thing, right? It's produced by Steve Albini, the man who produced Seamonsters, my favourire Wedding Present album, which again, can only be a good thing, right?

Well, maybe not. It's another step (almost a final one) towards the lo-fi sound of Yo La Tengo, which has been creeping into Gedge's most recent outputs, as well as the hints shown in Saturnalia, the last album before the TWP hiatus. As someone who likes Yo La Tengo and lo-fi, again, that can't be a bad thing, can it?

Well, maybe in this case. Now don't get me wrong, I've always enjoyed Gedge's vocals. I don't think you can love the Weddoes - and Cinerama - as much as I do, if you don't. The problem is, that his voice just doesn't seem to fit the music on El Rey. This is most apparent on the final track*, Swingers, when Terry de Castro's vocals enable it to become the highlight of the album. Unfortunately, at first listen, the rest of the album does come under the incorrect TWP cliche of "all the songs sound the same".

*Unless you downloaded it from iTunes, where a cover of Take That's Back For Good is the final track.

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