A/V Room









British Sea Power - Open Season

Review: Jack Foley

BRIGHTON-based indie-rockers, British Sea Power, can claim the likes of David Bowie, Bill Oddie, Radiohead, Jeremy Vine, Lou Reed, Ludovic Kennedy, REM, Ian Rankin, Julian Cope, Jon Savage, Daniel Radcliffe and Damien Hirst among their fanclub.

Yet such prestigious names do not guarantee record sales and even though debut album, The Decline Of British Sea Power, was greeted with critical acclaim, it has sold 50,303 over-the-counter copies in Great Britain and a little over 200,000 worldwide - which is a mere drop in the ocean compared to some bands.

The band has been busy trying to rectify this in time for their second album, Open Season, however, by touring with the likes of The Flaming Lips, The Strokes, Interpol, Pulp, The Killers and The Duke Spirit in the two years since their debut offering.

Whether or not it does the trick remains to be seen, especially as Open Season falls a little short of the high expectation surrounding it.

Lead single, It Ended On An Oily Stage, was a suitably rousing taster that sadly is only emulated by half of the album.

Much of this is due to the somewhat limited vocal style of lead singer, Yan (the band, reportedly, don't use surnames), who tends to make every track sound the same, particularly during the slower numbers.

But there is also something missing that's difficult to put the finger on (unless it's simply a question of personal taste).

Of the good stuff, To Get To Sleep rates among the best the LP has to offer, showcasing the band's ability to deliver some lustrous pop melodies with slightly offbeat lyrics - much like second track, Be Gone.

While some gutsy guitar-work helps to turn both Victorian Ice and Please Stand Up into rousing indie anthems.

But too often the album feels a little repetitive and nowhere near as praise-worthy as some reviews have suggested.

It's just a shame that an album that encompasses girls and guillotines, love and Larsen B, the foremost of all the collapsing Antarctic ice shelves, cannot be a little more adventurous vocally.


Track listing:
1. It Ended On An Oily Stage
2. Be Gone
3. How Will I Ever Find My Way Home?
4. Like A Honeycomb
5. Please Stand Up
6. North Hanging Rock
7. To Get To Sleep
8. Victorian Ice
9. Oh Larsen B
10. The Land Beyond
11. True Adventures

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