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Lucksmiths - First Frost

  by Benjamin Howarth

published: 11 / 12 / 2008

Lucksmiths - First Frost
Label: Fortuna POP!
Format: CD


Understated, but highly impressive new album from Australian group the Lucksmiths

Having recently moved into a new flat overlooking the Thames, my appreciation of just how cold life sometimes can be has expanded in recent months. My 7 a.m. walks to work have been decidedly crisp. An ideal time, therefore, for the Lucksmiths to release a new album called ‘First Frost’. In the past, I have tended to think of the Lucksmiths primarily as a singles band, not least because some of their best songs had been available only on seven inch singles. Even their best album, ‘Why That Doesn’t Surprise Me’, contained seven or eight corkers and a little bit of throwaway filler. On their last album, they, however, adopted a slightly more subdued style, which has given them more consistency. The addition of a fourth full-time member, Louis Richter, has also given their arrangements a little more depth. On ‘First Frost’ they have taken these welcome developments, expanded them and turned out an especially impressive album. ‘First Frost’ is a slow burner, with shy little songs that only really stand out after a few listens. But the Lucksmiths (notwithstanding the title of this album) are a warm, imaginative band. Their decision to adopt a more restrained and intricate musical style sounds natural, and it really suits them. I don’t want to oversell it - it’s a simple affair of gentle guitar pop, with strings, horns and the occasional harmonica - but given time, these songs nuzzle their way into your subconscious. Once the acknowledged leaders of the ‘indie-pop’ clique, the Lucksmiths have now branched their music out, and have quietly gone about making the best album of their career. All Pennyblackmusic readers will surely find something to admire here.

Track Listing:-
1 The Town and the Hills
2 Good Light
3 A Sobering Thought (Just When One Was Needed)
4 California in Popular Song
5 South-East Coastal Rendezvous
6 The National Mitten Registry
7 Day Three of Five
8 Never and Always
9 Lament of the Chiming Wedgebill
10 How We Met
11 Song of the Undersea
12 Up With the Sun
13 Pines
14 Who Turned On the Lights

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