Colourful and Creative

Vinny Peculiar are one of Manchester's best kept secrets, a band comprised of various musical geniuses who play charming and often highly amusing tunes that delight the listener. For those of you who're familiar with Vinny's work, 'Goodbye Angry Friend', is on the whole a more developed affair with electro additions and rumbling rock tunes turned into slick well-produced tunes breaking the usual pop tune boundaries of 3 minutes.

The leading track is a grim assertion that the great songwriter is dead; a brooding rock tune, rough and rolling along on a rumbling bassline; it's an incisive slice of echoing vitriol that makes for a great opener. The most defining feature of Vinny Peculiar's work is the delicate subject matter that the band have always happily engaged with, here Seasonal Affective Disorder is turned into a soothing lullaby complete with regency strings and harpischord. It's one of the most fresh and unique tunes that I've heard all year and subtly touching with lyrics like, "You wear a swimsuit in the rain, I'll put umbrellas up indoors".

'Happiest Man In The World' is reminscent of Brett Anderson's, 'The More We Possess The Less We Own Of Ourselves', in its condemnation of consumer culture and careening vocals embalmed with an easy charisma. While 'Lazy Bohemians' is an upbeat, insouciant jaunt into the socio-political conscience of the band, reflecting in smooth and somnolent instrumentation on the joys of sleeping late into the afternoon. 'Lost For Words' is a more typical dippy and delightful Vinny number, a reflective work of metaliterature that chews over the process of songwriting. 'Batman' is one of the highlights, a catchy tune with thundering drumbeats and grandiose screaming guitar notes, "I could have been Batman and stuck to my guns, I could have protested and I could have won", sobs the chorus chant full of effusive energy.

Although the tunes are as solid as ever, sadly the production seems to have somewhat overwhelmed the band's efforts on this album, with tracks consistently stretched out by musing harmonies that do little to improve the track and merely dull the punch. "Here is a record that, for better or worse, plays by its own rules", states the press release, and this judgment truly can't be faulted, however if you really want a taste of Vinny Peculiar, make sure you check them out live rather than rely on this album as an indication of their talent.