Los Campesinos! - Sick Scenes
Ten is a pretty rare number of years for a modern indie band to receive such kudos as Los Campesinos! They've six albums and three EPs under their belt, while changing half the band since they came on to the scene in 2006. And they sound determined to keep on going with new album Sick Scenes; their first album since 2013's excellent No Blues.
When the band are at their best is when Gareth David and guitarist Tom Bromley create immediate pop-songs with hidden depths. Not only are they one of the only remaining bands who can pull off a glockenspiel, they are one of the rare bands who have never lost their distinctive sound. David's every man vocals and group's sing-a-long choruses have made the band popular with game console adverts and gathered fans all around the world. How many British bands can still tour America on their sixth album?
The record is like a best of Los Campesinos!; there are the instant pop songs like 'Renato Dall Ara (2008)' and single 'I Broke Amarante' and the loser anthems like 'A Slow, Slow Death' and 'For Whom The Belly Tolls'. But the album has more quieter moments than one would expect, 'The Fall Of Home' for example is more reminiscent of Belle and Sebastian.
Sick Scenes is exactly what a long-time fan would want to expect from the sextet. A lyrically sharp record, filled to the brim with concise guitar riffs alongside some surprisingly mature slower band offerings. They can still write some great indie anthems, but not the sort that bullish, larger louts would sing post football match. These are for the anthems for anyone who can see the beauty in nostalgia and a Lionel Messi dribble. Here's to another ten years.