Fairly predictably, I suppose, I’ve been watching the unravelling Best New Bands Of 2009 business with some bafflement. Not that my taste was ever going to chime completely with this sort of thing, of course (in my ballot for the BBC poll, I did actually include Florence & The Machine, alongside Telepathe and Crystal Antlers, for what it’s worth).
The Korgis' bittersweet 1980 hit "Everybody's Got To Learn Some Time", and 1998's future of rock'n'roll, Beck. What could they have in common? Well, Beck has wised up and done a cover of said narcoleptic nugget. And in this intelligent, melancholy film, it sounds every bit as affecting as intended. Jon Brion, the man behind the score to Magnolia, contributes the bulk, while The Polyphonic Spree chime in with "Light And Day". If you enjoy the Spree un-ironically, you'll also love ELO's "Mr Blue Sky", here in all its bombast.
This full length debut of music box chimes ("Both Mirror And Armour"), sampled Japanese folk songs ("Sakura", "Takeda") and proggy Vangelis-inspired electronics (everything else) has a neo-pastoral charm which, at face value, would align it closely with the output of labels like Memphis Industries and Tummy Touch.