Album: Dan Black, Un, (A&M / Polydor)

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An Englishman in Paris, Black balances symphonic pop with laptronica, putting him roughly equidistant between Patrick Wolf and Sam Sparro.

The former leader of the much-admired The Servant, Black has emerged as a peculiarly redeemable type of songwriter: simultaneously introspective and reaching out to the world.

Un has many charms and one or two outstanding moments, notably the pulverising "I Love Life" and "Pump My Pumps", which rips the riff from Cliff's "Devil Woman" and somehow still sounds cool.