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The Big Pink : Future This

 - The Big Pink -

Some bands – including many Foam Hands favourites – write songs because they feel compelled to do so, aware that they will likely be heard only by a select few. Others make music for the masses, unapologetic anthems custom-built to fill stadiums or to be murdered, Karaoke-style, every Saturday night by bleary-eyed guys hugging their friends on dirty dancefloors. The Big Pink (Robbie Furze and Milo Cordell) clearly fall into the latter category, a point proved by their breakthrough single “Dominos” – a massive planet-eater of a tune destined to soundtrack football highlight montages and slow-motion movie fight scenes alike for years to come – and it would be all too easy to hate them for doing so if only they weren’t so damn good at it. Paul Epworth-produced sophomore album Future This trumps its 2009 predecessor A Brief History Of Love by including not one, not two, but THREE mega-hits in waiting – “Stay Gold”, “Hit The Ground (Superman)” and “Rubbernecking” – that are so insanely catchy they make “Dominos” seem about as chart-friendly as an Anal C**t song remixed by Prurient; but just as importantly it finds the duo boosting their likeability factor by dropping much of the sleazily hedonistic subject matter that often blighted their debut. Instead, Furze and Cordell here embrace an almost hippy-ish positivity that, in partnership with their singalong hooks and effortless, almost detached cool places them somewhere between Coldplay and Kasabian without resorting to either the former’s cloyingly goofy optimism or the twattish bad boy posturing of the latter. Its three highlights aside, the rest of Future This is a consistently impressive reminder that a tune doesn’t need an orchestra plastered onto it to make it sound huge: at their best, using little more than a guitar, synths and a drum machine, the group recall the indie-dance titans the Charlatans at their late-90s peak or New Order in their early industrial days (at their worst, the lumpen emo-tinged electro-rock of the title track, they actually sound like – shudder – Linkin Park, but it’s perhaps best to gloss over that). It might be transparently populist and almost completely void of any real emotional depth, but the Big Pink’s feelgood music is pretty much perfect pop, and – especially considering the marked improvement in the pair’s songwriting – that’s certainly not something you should hold against them.  Listen: “Hit The Ground (Superman)”

Future This is out January 16 on 4AD

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About foamhands

My name is Michael Dix; I'm a decade or so past being down with the kids, but to me new music never gets old. Apparently I like music that sounds like faulty kitchen appliances and ritual slaughter; really I just like what I like, whether that happens to be indie, pop, punk, hip hop, metal, electronica, Afrobeat or jazz. Follow me on Twitter @FoamHandsBlog to receive notifications of new posts and the occasional random brain-fart, and please share links wherever you can. Enjoy!

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