CD Small Talk [Mohair] (CD 1089994),
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Small Talk [Mohair]

  • 1. Talk of the Town
    2. Stranded
    3. End of the Line
    4. Little Voice
    5. Thin Air
    6. Keep It Together
    7. Disarray
    8. L.A. Song
    9. Ella May
    10. Life
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 002

  • Credits
    ProducerMark Wallis; Dave Ruffy; Mark Wallis; Dave Ruffy

    Mohair: Alex Riohards (vocals, keyboards); Tom Billington (guitars); Pete Baker (trumpet, drums); Tim Slade (bass instrument).
    Personnel: Tom Billington (vocals, guitar); Tim Slade (vocals).
    Photographers: Hugh MacDonald; Dylan Thomas.
    This British quartet certainly know a thing or two about keeping the listener's interest, using a time-honored pop/rock feeling for a party-starting "Talk of the Town" that sounds like a slightly timid Arctic Monkeys with a catchy, fun chorus. Throw some barbershop quartet ad-libbing and the Futureheads are briefly brought to mind. Just as bouncy is "Stranded," a tune that has a mix of Brit-pop characteristics and a Beatles flare. Again, the song shines thanks to a fine, singalong chorus that highlights the already very impressive effort. Mohair rarely veer from this catchy, at times irresistible style with the jaunty, stellar "End of the Line" which has a steady, punchy backbeat, great harmonies and a fine amount of piano (and some horns) to drive the song home perfectly. The band rarely become bombastic, instead relying on tight, radio-friendly hooks as they do during "Little Voice," a song that sounds like it came straight from Blur's songbook. Even during the obligatory slow-building ballad "Thin Air" does the band make the most of the rather ordinary number, bringing to mind a cross between Snow Patrol and Jet. The first run-of-the-mill song has to be "Keep It Together" that sees Mohair trying on a hat that is best worn by the likes of Franz Ferdinand. The group try their hand at a slice of Americana-meets-California pop with "L.A. Song" with a mixed result at best. The album concludes with a murky but meaningful "Life." This is an album that should have a lot of people talking. ~ Jason MacNeil

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