Goose - SYNRISE
In 2007, Goose's debut album proved to be a hidden gem amongst that year's slew of trendy dance/rock crossovers. Released in the UK at the same time as Klaxons' mythical debut, Bring It On didn't do big numbers or attract critical fawning in the same way but it was one heck of a party album, enhanced further by the Belgian act's energetic live show. It's a shame then that follow-up SYNRISE falls short in two big ways: much of it sounds like a rehash of Bring It On's anthemic club-hoppers, while the rest of it tries in vain to conjure a more atmospheric sound that ultimately falls flat. Opener and title track 'Synrise' introduces Moroder-style synth arpeggios and features a hummed vocal courtesy of Peaches; it's a solid opener but contrived nonetheless, a criticism that can be directed at the album in its entirety. At least it isn't as pretentious as Surfing the Void, with 'After' and 'In Cars' sounding like the appealing Klaxons of old. Single 'Can't Stop Me Now' and 'Like You' prove to be simple yet catchy dance-pop moments, while the techno-influenced 'Words' looks to be homing in on Presets' slightly menacing territory. Although SYNRISE doesn't amount to a fully satisfying second album, it does at least attempt to expand the band's sound and, tried and tested by yours truly, provides enough thrills to make it a worthy soundtrack to the ol' getting-ready-on-a-Saturday-night routine.