For a decade now
this English trio-recently-turned-quartet have spun their eerie web of delicate
pop music. Beginning with singles on labels like Pointy and Elefant the band
has now released their 5th full-length on Merge (including the
singles compilation, Suburban Light). While 2007‘s God Save the Clientele saw an ever-so-slight dip in quality after
2005’s brilliant Strange Geometry, Bonfires on the Heath show the band, led
by main songwriter Alasdair MacLean, back at top of its game.
First cut “I
Wonder Who We Are”, with its effervescent bounce and 60’s pop horns, is a
perfect way to open a record while the drowsy swoony track recalls the best
parts of Galaxie 500. A few cuts fly a bit too far off into never never land
(the dull “Harvest Time”, the meandering “Jennifer & Julia”) but pop gems
like “Never Anyone but You” and the swinging “Sketch” more than make up for it.
The addition of multi-instrumentalist Mel Draisey seems to have given the band
an increased confidence and Bonfires on
the Heath is only further proof of it.
Recommended Tracks: “Never Anyone But You”, “Sketch”,
“Share the Night”, “Graven Wood” TIM HINELY