Race Horses – Furniture (Stolen Records)

October 3, 2012 by  

When I saw the Welsh five-piece support the excellent Fanfarlo earlier this year, it was the first time I had set eyes on their quirk-pop and the interesting indie-scarecrow look of lead singer Meilyr Jones. They captured the best parts of Pulp and Super Furry Animals, and I grabbed a signed copy of the album.

On listening to ‘Golden Falkenburg’ it was clearly very different to the band previous seen. Half the songs were in Welsh, the layers of keyboards were absent and apart from the excellent singles it was rather lacking.

On hearing ‘Furniture’, I have found that band I fell in love that night. A variety of styles, funk, disco and new wave all kept in check by the Jones’s 80s vocal delivery and far more commercial than their debut. Current single ‘My Year Abroad’ is their finest moment to date. Like a missing track from a lost Duran Duran album it’s a mix of moody synths , robotic drumbeats and a barn storming chorus. The keyboard is the key to ‘Furniture’, where most track are driven by a piano riff or waves of synths. ‘ Bad Blood’ and ‘Nobody’s Son’ are nearly all electronic and a large step from their early work when they were known as Radio Luxemburg.

2012’s Race Horsesare never going to win any awards for originality, but if you enjoyed The Mystery Jets ‘Twenty One’ then you’re sure to find some magic here. It’s a far from perfect album. There are a few songs that end up going in the wrong direction, and it will be hard to find a better 80s pop album this year!

[rating:3.5]


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