Alternative music reviews

September 14, 2007

A Moveable Feast by The Sharp Things

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I don’t know whether the world is in Black and White and The Sharp Things are in Colour or if it’s the other way around.

The Jumpers starts the album with a small chamber orchestra and is beautifully unsettling with a creepy feel from the understated story of two people jumping off a building and their ‘hilarious demise’. From this prelude, you realise that The Sharp Things are not your usual band. Then it’s into the self-loathing of Through With Love with insistent violins to emphasise the neurosis while the chorus merely emphasises that this is a lie and love will once again be pursued. Cruel Thing is sweet Soul but the lyrics are not all sweetness and light. The lush orchestration never hides the intelligence of the lyrics.

Just for fun, let me try the comparison game – how about Penguin Orchestra, Todd Rundgren (Gilbert and Sullivan period) and the Handsome Family? A touch of low life, a touch of bitterness, and all wrapped up in a romantic, slightly world weary mist.

I just didn’t get their second album so I am pleased to say that The Sharp Things are back on form. Towards the end of the album there are some tracks that miss the mark for me but I’ve found that it depends on my mood – the more relaxed I am then the more I like them. I have no idea where the Sharp Things fit in. If they were in England where would they play? I can’t see the Indie Pubs booking them (not enough room on the stage for one reason). But it is precisely that sense that this is a band who laugh in the face of fashion that makes them special.

The Sharp Things

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