Album review

Maximo Park - Our Earthly Pleasures

Maximo Park - Our Earthly Pleasures

Maximo Park spent a lot of their restless debut beating about the bush – dithering being part of gawky Geordie frontman Paul Smith's Jarvisesque appeal. "Our Earthly Pleasures", however, has the welcome swagger of a band flushed with confidence following two garlanded years. Repeated listens – it's a grower – reveal a number of meatier, surprisingly hard-rocking songs, like "Our Velocity" and "Karaoke Plays", to which Smith, with a flash of Sparks, applies typically pithy verse.
Lines such as, "You've lived your life with your mouth wide open" (from "Girls Who Play Guitars") and "Did we go too far – is that why your nose is bleeding?" (from "Nosebleed") show he gets good mileage out of the girls who evade and succumb to his clammy embrace. That his comical desperation dovetails so convincingly with the band's invigorating, Gil Norton-helmed power-indie is, once more, no small cause for celebration.

PIERS MARTIN

Rating: 4 / 10

(Warp)


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The 46th (And Last) Playlist Of 2014


Sorry I didn't manage to post a playlist last week; a combination of germs, deadlines and various other professional/seasonal distractions meant that I ran out of time.

Here, though, is our last office list of 2014, with lots of strong new entries. A few highlights...