Album: Kid Galahad

Gold Dust Noise, Ignition
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The Independent Culture

The Maidenhead rockers Kid Galahad have talent in abundance and, as this album's exuberant opening track "Where's My Gold?" attests, no lack of ambition either. Indeed, Gold Dust Noise sounds like an A&R person's wet dream – albeit one stuck in a Nineties Britpop timewarp. So although as musically articulate as earlier Thames Valley rockers like Radiohead and (particularly) Supergrass, Kid Galahad display little originality or innovation here, as tracks recall the modes and manners of an earlier decade: the sample-rock of EMF ("Where's My Gold?"), the prog-rock smarts of Mansun ("Pack It in"), and the dubby trip-hop of the Bristol diaspora ("I Don't Wanna Play"). It's all cleverly done and nicely varied in style, with the shrill complexity of tracks such as "Swimming to Shore" and "Runaway Train" balanced by the more laissez-faire attitude of "Skedaddle". But there's never a compelling expression of the band's own personality, a concern perhaps hinted at in lyrics, which lament feeling

The Maidenhead rockers Kid Galahad have talent in abundance and, as this album's exuberant opening track "Where's My Gold?" attests, no lack of ambition either. Indeed, Gold Dust Noise sounds like an A&R person's wet dream – albeit one stuck in a Nineties Britpop timewarp. So although as musically articulate as earlier Thames Valley rockers like Radiohead and (particularly) Supergrass, Kid Galahad display little originality or innovation here, as tracks recall the modes and manners of an earlier decade: the sample-rock of EMF ("Where's My Gold?"), the prog-rock smarts of Mansun ("Pack It in"), and the dubby trip-hop of the Bristol diaspora ("I Don't Wanna Play"). It's all cleverly done and nicely varied in style, with the shrill complexity of tracks such as "Swimming to Shore" and "Runaway Train" balanced by the more laissez-faire attitude of "Skedaddle". But there's never a compelling expression of the band's own personality, a concern perhaps hinted at in lyrics, which lament feeling left behind ("I took a wrong turn in the human race/I tried to catch up but I lost the pace") and reveal a desire to escape to more "happening" territory ("I would have run off sooner but I couldn't feel my legs"). The secret is probably not to play catch-up constantly, but to head out for their own sound. They obviously have the ability.

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