Kaleide by Sky Larkin is quite a good album. It's not a great album, and it's not a bad album, it's just quite good. And, to be honest, I don't really know what else to say. It's perfectly acceptable indie pop-rock; Kate Nash fronting latter day Red Hot Chilli Peppers, perhaps. As mentioned, the album never does anything wrong as such; but I'd be hard pressed to name or even point out a standout track on the disc as it is, unfortunately, rather samey. On first listen I was reminded of The Thermals, but they have a certain rawness that Sky Larkin do not, and this serves only to neuter the Leeds based 3 piece.
There are flashes of greatness however; "Anjelica Houston"'s wavering vocals make the ears sit up and beg for more, and "Spooktacular"s opening couple of seconds sound like Metallica have taken over your stereo before what can only be described as reasonably standard female indie warbles take centre stage.
I don't want to use the word 'bland' to describe this album, but I'm struggling not to. I actually forgot I was listening to this disc earlier, so bad is it at holding the listener's attention. The songs themselves are good, they just do little to distinguish themselves from anything else - 'Kaleide' could have been written by any number of artists on the indy scene at the moment and nobody would have noticed.
Sky Larkin seem to be a band with somewhat of an identity crisis: They've got the snarl and the attitude of the Buzzcocks, but at the same time that bravado is cut short by a very poppy production and delivery that, in my mind, do them no faours. Sky Larkin are going to go places, mark my word; I just don't think they'll do it on the strength of this release. I probably won't be listening to them after writing this review, but my girlfriend has already stated a vested interest in the band - But she likes Goldfrapp, so what does she know, eh?