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This Week In Albums... There was only album anyone was really talking about wasn't there? Daft Punk's much anticipated fourth LP Random Access Memories was streamed early after it leaked on the internet allowing the world's media their chance to get in quick with their gut-check reactions. Our man Joe Wilde was a little more reflective in his assessments though, and found much to love about the French duo's comeback - even if hasn't ended up being the classic that so many people were hoping for. He wrote: "Guy-Manuel and Thomas are perfectionists in every sense, and whilst the album itself isn't a perfect listen, it is still a thoroughly rewarding and worthwhile one; and what more could we and the robots have asked for?"
There were some other much-vaunted French types releasing their comeback album this Spring too; it's a case of if it ain't broke don't fix it for Phoenix. Hoewever that means we once again get an LP of intelligent pop that's as catchy as it is inventive. Jim Pusey found it to be an enjoyable listen, although he felt it lacked something that its mainstream-breaking predecessor Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix had; he commented "There's much here to like, but it lacks some of the charm that made Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix quite so endearing."
The harmonious, folk rock styling of Crosby Stills, Nash & Young, America and Buffalo Springfield formed a rock under current that will never truly die, and Treetop Flyers are the latest band to put this theory into practice. The Mountain Moves is the first full-length release from the 4/5 English group (drummer Tomer Danan is American), caring on a tradition that has seen Fleet Foxes, Cherbourg, The Pines - to name but a few - achieve recognition and praise in recent years.
Despite their metropolitan and distinctly British upbringing - most of the band at least - the group do not once ease off on their folksy, Americana style creating a consistent listen that, whilst admittedly does not give too many surprises, it still never fails to engage and entertain. Maybe it's the tried and tested formula that keeps the album going so steadily; the sense of nostalgia and warmth that accompanies the soulful vocals of Reid Morrison or the tight as a bolt compatibility of the rest of the band to makes The Mountain Moves a reasonably rewarding listen. Whatever it is, the group are doing something right.
Kicking things off with 'Things Will Change,' the euphoric pop rock first single from the album, the band set the ball rolling with what is the stand-out track on the album. Its simple pop structure allows the listener to ease into Morrison's vocal style - which sounds as though Mick Hucknall is trying his best Neil Young impression - one that carries gravitas and joy in equal measures and never falls second fiddle to the noise of the rest of the group. Admittedly, the band never manages to reach these heady heights again, but they do come close to creating other joyous pop numbers as the album progresses.
Continue reading: Treetop Flyers - The Mountain Moves Album Review