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Alberteen - Metal Book

  by Andy Cassidy

published: 28 / 1 / 2012

Alberteen - Metal Book
Label: Rhythm and Noir
Format: CD


Infectious guitar-led rock on brilliant debut album from Nottingham-based post punk group, Alberteen

Following the success of the single 'A Girl and a Gun', BBC Radio6 darlings Alberteen release their debut album 'Metal Book'. Produced by Ian Brown/ Fall producer Mike Bennett, the album expands upon what the group have called a “rhythm and noir” sound. Alberteen are a three piece group consisting of Ade Berry, John Rose and Phil Shaw. For the purposes of recording 'Metal Book', the band was augmented by Gareth Warden on percussion and Sadie Pickering on vocals. Alberteen’s brand of guitar-led rock is infectious, reminiscent in places of Franz Ferdinand and Magazine, at once driven and urgent and yet melodic and beautifully performed. The opening title track begins with a great earworm of a guitar hook and a throbbing beat. Musically, I found shades of 1960's TV crime caper themes - think 'Batman' meets 'The Man From U.N.C.L.E', with a vocal delivered with just the right balance of sneering and sincerity. 'Metal Book' owes a great debt to Alex Turner’s side project the Last Shadow Puppets and specifically their album 'The Age of the Understatement'. Nowhere is this more apparent than on the single 'A Girl and a Gun'. That said, the single is a fantastic piece of retro pop with guitar work reminiscent of Vic Flick. The album takes on a softer mood with 'The Stranger'. Again, though, John Rose’s guitar steals the show with a superbly understated solo. 'The Butcher’s Daughter' is a post-punk ballad elevated by superb musicianship - indeed, throughout the album the musicianship excels and the band are remarkably tight. As well as the band’s musical ability, singer Phil Shaw’s lyrics are fantastic. This is hardly surprising, given his background – Shaw is a professor of English Literature at the University of Leicester and the author of the best-selling 33 1/3 book on Patti Smith’s seminal 'Horses'. Ade Berry, who plays a mean bass, has previously worked with Nick Cave and ex-Magazine and Visage man Barry Adamson on theatrical soundtracks. If it’s true, and smart is the new sexy, then these guys are going to be huge. 'Metal Book' is an outstanding debut album by anyone’s standards. It has a perfect balance of music and lyrics, and the performance is clinical and precise without ever sounding sterile. Alberteen are a very exciting band, brimming with energy, ability and intelligence. Expect exciting things from them.

Track Listing:-
1 Metal Book
2 A Girl and a Gun
3 Tamogotchi Landfill
4 The Stranger
5 Our Dead Language
6 The Butcher's Daughter
7 The Butcher's Daughter
8 Waterloo Teeth
9 All You Can Eat
10 Falling Down

Band Links:-

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