Electric Cables - Lightships
Gerard Love is obviously best known for Teenage Fanclub, a band once hailed by Kurt Cobain as the best in the world. The thing about Teenage Fanclub is that Love was just one third of the songwriting team, so his summery contributions were given edge and teeth by the remaining two-thirds; Norman Blake and Raymond McGinley. Here, Love is given free rein to indulge his twee side, and the result is that Electric Cables is candyfloss sweet and packs no kind of punch whatsoever.
That's not necessarily a bad thing - Lightships were never going to be another Teenage Fanclub, after all, so it'd be silly to expect them to be. Electric Cables manages to stand on its own merits, once the comparisons to Teenage Fanclub are out of the way - it's a dreamy, deceptively simple record that harkens back to days of summer past.
Sweetness In Her Spark is a particular stand-out, showcasing the best that Love offers on this record. Alternately soothing and soaring, Sweetness In Her Spark is unhurried and lazy, drifting by with so much subtlety that it's difficult to notice until it's fully wound its candyfloss strands around your mind and you found yourself repeatedly hitting replay.
The strongest comparisons can be drawn on the ethereal Silver & Gold - while Love's vocals are slightly grating at times in their faint airiness, there's a touch of the power-pop about it that Teenage Fanclub did so well. Gerard Love - and the bevy of great musicians surrounding him on this record - have created something technically accomplished and pleasant to listen to. Mostly, though, it's just missing a spark.