Clinic - Winchester Cathedral
Liverpool's Clinic undoubtedly have an interesting c.v.. Friends of Radiohead, they've appeared on The David Letterman Show and recorded a Grammy nominated album, Walking With Thee, but mention their name on any UK street and you're likely to be hit with a big "Who?"
Listening to Winchester Cathedral, the successes mentioned above remain a mystery. Clinic are a quirky and distinctive prospect for sure, although not in the radio-friendly, scally-rock style of fellow Liverpudlians The Coral.
Perhaps it's the frequently wailing melodica to the fore that gives them a mystic edge. At times their music conjurs images of, say, snake-charming or druids at dusk. Singer Ade Blackburn, when not sounding like a sneering imp holding its nose, could almost be mistaken for a more muffled Brian Molko; indeed Home could be one of Placebo's slower songs. Many tracks (such as Country Mile and The Magician) are characterised by stompy rhythms, which compliment their brevity. WDYBB is perhaps the most atypical thing here, near no-nonsense punk which threatens to break into The Undertones' Jimmy Jimmy.
On the evidence of Winchester Cathedral, Clinic are a hard band to pin down. This is oddball indie rock with an air of magic. It's unlikely to increase their popularity in the UK, but it makes for an intriguing listen.