By Kenny McMurtrie
October 08, 2013
Sometimes you manage to get what you’ve asked for. After reviewing The Pure Conjecture‘s debut album Courgettes I was of a mind that the sooner they had another one out the better as it just wasn’t long enough to fully satisfy, instead being a tantalising introduction. Clearly they’ve now done that very thing.
Gendres in no way messes with the template laid down on that first release, even going so far as to have nine tracks again (just one less than the number of personnel that make up the group – this is a big unit we’re talking here).
Having said all that opening track ‘Roadworks On Memory Lane’ is rather a pub band kind of mid-paced plodder, albeit one enlivened by sweetly wry lyrics and saved as the sound fills out towards the end.
‘Surfin’ Sunset’, as you’d likely guess, is a surf instrumental but as with the previous tune there’s more to it than that pigeonholing description allows for. Such subtle shifts of perspective as the instruments employed here are pressed in to service to deliver are the album’s strength beneath the surface.
That case is ably made when third track ‘Opinion Fatigue’ reaches its halfway point and the organ fills in, the drums and brass ramp up and the backing vocals have sway. For the tiniest amount of time. It is though very much a case of “less is more”.
A de-ska’d Madness can be imagined as the album progresses – a similar level of pathos and humour as exhibited by the older band runs through this work and you can imagine that in a live setting they get stuck in to having a whale of a time for all concerned. Playing both this and Courgettes back to back is a distinct pleasure and what I’ll now be asking for is a third effort that really works up a sweat, thanks very much in advance.