Experimental Music Love

January 8, 2008

The Hours – Narcissus Road 05/02/07

Filed under: Album Reviews — by Free Edinburgh Podcast @ 9:14 pm

The Hours – Narcissus Road

Ant Genn and Martin Slattery are two men with fine pedigrees in the British music scene. Their talented minds have worked with the likes of Elastica, Pulp, Black Grape and Joe Strummer. Limited then to playing and producing other people’s work, with little chance for their own ideas and songs to find their way onto a tangible record, their biggest regret was that they did not take the challenge of becoming a band in their own right.

That was until one night in 2004 when the two were in attendance at a Radiohead performance. A performance so awe inspiring and triumphant that they finally garnered to impetus to get out and do it for themselves. Narcissus Road is the result, and thankfully, it’s as good as anything they’ve worked on previously.

Boldly stating that “unless you’ve got something to say, mate, don’t even step towards that mic,” Genn knows the power of a good set of lyrics. Managing to be humorous, insightful and often incredibly meaningful, these words transcend all emotions yet still contain that basis in real life, never feeling contrived or overtly philosophical. Genn’s proclamation of loving someone more ‘than [his] record collection’ or indeed his ‘Adidas trainers’ on Love You More are as valid as anything you’ll find in Romeo and Juliet.

Pounding anthems co-exist splendidly with more fragile moments as Ali in the Jungle excels in its take on beating the odds to ecstatic effect, yet I Miss You doesn’t just tug at the heart strings but tears them out.

A more than commendable attempt to do this whole band shindig for themselves, The Hours have created an emotional, resounding debut that should hopefully see them gain the same reputation of some of their previous colleagues. In the words of one such former band mate, Jarvis Cocker, “let them into your life. You won’t regret it.”

And they brought Janice Long to tears in one of the greatest pieces of radio I’ve ever heard.

8.4/10

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