...it's hard not to tap one's feet as singer Dave Martin's dulcet tones, sounding at times like a cross between Nick Cave and Carry On legend Kenneth Williams
Drag out your rah rah skirts and dancing shoes as popular beat combo I Like Trains get into their post post-rock groove!
Taking its title from Nicholas Carr's The Shallows- What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains, I Like Trains' third album marks a musical departure for the Leeds based band whose trademark guitar sounds appear to have been replaced by a foray into the back catalogue of The Pet Shop Boys and Eno era Roxy Music. Although the subject matter is equally as dark as that of their earlier works, this time round, it's hard not to tap one's feet as singer Dave Martin's dulcet tones, sounding at times like a cross between Nick Cave and Carry On legend Kenneth Williams, battle it out with the dancing wall of synths sound that pulses in the background. Produced by Wild Beasts' producer, Richard Formby, the album has a much cleaner sound than that of its predecessors , ditching their lush, multilayered sound for an altogether more spartan and understated soundscape, befitting an album that deals with the paradox of technology, and perhaps more specifically, the way in which human relationships have been changed by our constant access to social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, which allow us to share real time details about ourselves with virtual strangers in a simulation of intimacy.
Released on the band's own label, ILR thanks once again to their fans' generosity, the irony of their dependence on the very medium they attack on the record has not escaped the band, with Martin's intelligent lyrics expressing the dichotomy of embracing the benefits of the present whilst holding on to the values of our collective past. The highlight of the album is undoubtedly Reykjavik, a track that will sound the most familiar to fans, with its more expansive and guitar led sound and Martin's somewhat louche and sinister intonation. Other stand out tracks include the album's upbeat opener Beacons, and single Mnemosyne, although the album is best listened to as a whole, allowing oneself to be submerged in its intricate depths.