Album: Guillemots, Walk the River (Geffen)

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The Independent Culture

Guillemots have never been short on ambition, and Walk the River opens accordingly, with trepidation and expectation wrapped up together in the title-track's foreboding intro riff, as Fyfe Dangerfield sings of "backing out of the race".

Of course, there's no way he'd carry out such a threat, and subsequent songs find him exulting in the cascading guitar lines, veils of organ and shimmering string pads of songs such as "Vermillion" and the epic plodder "Sometimes I Remember Wrong". "Slow Train" stands out for its blend of buzzy electropop synth and George Michael-style croon, but a more worrying comparison is suggested by the plaintive self-pity of "Dancing in the Devil's Shoes" and especially "I Don't Feel Amazing Now", in which the dread spectre of U2 and Coldplay's billboard sincerity looms a little too large for comfort.

DOWNLOAD THIS Walk the River; Vermillion; Slow Train