Music is such a wonderful synchronistic art-form. At the same time as this album was being made, The Polyphonic Spree were putting the final touches on their debut album (reviewed here) There are a lot of similarities between the two; massive membership, uplifting music and hooks aplenty.
I actually prefer this over The 'Spree for a number of reasons - I believe the song writing is better and the personnel making up this band are, for the most part, stars in their own right. Featuring members of bands such as Teenage Fanclub, Mogwai, Belle & Sebastian, Idlewild and Snow Patrol, this is a Scottish indie supergroup par excellence. The well-read members of our readership would remember my scathing review of Snow Patrol (see it here) but would also remember I said this is a very different listening experience.
Son Of Evil Reindeer is the second album by The Reindeer Section and is another particularly good very late night/early morning record. If the first is anything like this, it could well find a home in our collection too. While Garry Lightbody of Snow Patrol is all over this (both as principal writer and vocalist) it's a pity his day band doesn't sound like this. If they did, I'd be very happy.
VERDICT: TURN IT UP
I want to thank The Reindeer Section - for making an extra-long drive home in crawl-and-stop traffic bearable. And I'd forgotten just how relaxing and uplifting these songs are. I'd defy anybody wearing their cranky pants to keep them on (oo-er!) while listening to Son Of Evil Reindeer.
Which, by the way, leads me into a rant about names. Don't people think before naming their albums and bands? And how about album artwork? I would never have bought an album called Son Of Evil Reindeer without knowing something about it first, but I would have bought an album by the Reindeer Section, no problem. There was a compilation album on the World Music label some several years ago that I picked up and put down about a dozen times before buying it - because it had a weird-looking skull on the cover. Yet it contained some of the most beautiful music by artists I'd never heard of.
OK, it'd be kind of silly for people to get together and form a band called A Nice Guitar Based Pop Band and then put out an album called Some Uptempo Numbers and A Couple Of Ballads. But really. Sometimes people annoy me by being misleading with this stuff. It's called marketing, guys, do a bit of research.
Anyway, I'm obviously not listening to this CD now, because the cranky pants are well and truly in place. The only other thing I can say about it is - it's lovely hearing that Scottish accent come through (when it does). All-around gorgeous and I have to label this a Forgotten Gem for me.
VERDICT:TURN IT UP
For more information: http://www.myspace.com/thereindeersection