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Thursday, January 1, 2009

Album Review: The Boat People - Chandeliers

To give you an idea of what Aussie quartet The Boat People sound like, think of a more softly-spoken Crowded House. Their gentle indie-pop soliloquys are strong enough to have secured them a stage to share with such acts as Idlewild, The Shins and Midlake. ‘Chandeliers’ is their second album and has certainly been well-received back in the land of Oz. Now with a UK release, we get a chance to hear what all the fuss is about.

‘Awkward Orchid Orchard’ sets the pace with an upbeat rhythm and plenty of backing harmonies showcasing vocalist Rob Waters softly-spoken style. It’s somewhere between Brendan Benson and Sice (The Boo Radleys) and screams of perfect summer days - sunlight streaming in through trees and the surf lapping on the beach. Fuzzed guitar breaks into twinkling keys for ‘Light Of Love’ and familiar chord structures. In fact, everywhere you turn there’s little hints of 80s and 90s pop acts - a slowed-down Lightning Seeds riff during ‘Born In The 80s‘, Dodgy’s keyboards on ‘Tell Someone Who Cares‘, Athlete on ‘Babysnake‘.

So, great if, like the song, you were born in the 80s and are still into any of the above bands, but if you’re looking for something ground-breaking you’re not going to get it here.

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