The Soundcarriers - Celeste (Melodic)

Nottingham quartet The Soundcarriers - Adam, Pish, Dorian and Little Barrie - have come up with another rummage through a 60s/70s musical charity shop that is just as appealing as their justly acclaimed 2009 debut Harmonium.

Released Aug 27th, 2010 via Melodic / By Norman Miller
The Soundcarriers - Celeste (Melodic) The band themselves nod openly to their love of everything from Can and early Floyd to “more obscure stuff” filed under soundtracks, easy listening and jazzy folk. Other listeners point to the likes of Stereolab - fair comparison as the stabbing retro keyboards and lush harmonies of excellent opener 'Last Broadcast' ring out. But The Soundcarriers are more than just another jazzy space-rock outfit. Sure, they wear their influences on their sleeves but they bring their own beguiling spin to almost all the dozen tracks here.

'roken Sleep' carries on where 'Last Broadcast' left off with its staccato keyboard and punchy little guitar beneath Dorian’s lush vocal, while 'Long Highway' is even better, feeding chimes, glockenspiel and flute seamlessly into its gorgeous textures.

Sheer infectiousness carries along almost every track apart from the dragging 'Morning Haze' and over-kitsch lounge-groove of 'Step Outside', and neat additions save the rest of the album from sounding like a band just coasting.

The lolloping 'Rolling On' chucks in a great throwaway rock guitar riff, the poppy jig of 'There Only Once' is iced with an almost bluesy finale, while razor-tight bass meet pop swing to very groovy effect on 'Rise And Fall', and spiralling jagged guitar licks provide the contrast in the darkly epic title track.

'Out Of Place', meanwhile, echoes someone like Jefferson Airplane with its complicated textures wrapped around a deeper, more seductive vocal, while the beautifully restrained neo-Americana of 'Hideaway' provides unexpected proof that the band aren’t totally plugged into the ‘Kosmiche’ groove.

Anyone who remembers an era when Bacardi was the height of sophistication will love this, but even if you’ve never heard of anyone like the Swingle Singers you probably will to.