‘No One Can Ever Know‘ is probably an odd title for a piece of music I think alot of people should know about. I stumbled upon this band one night tucked up in bed listening to Gideon Coe’s BBC 6 Music show and was wowed by this fascinating track which included loads of electronic sounds swirling around, very reminiscent of the early 80’s. The actual song in question was the excellent Twilight Sad’s new single ‘Another Bed‘. Over the next few days I tracked down its parent album from the band’s website and have since played it to death.
The influences are very evident for people to hear that being Joy Division and more recently The Editors. This band hail from north of the border and this is their third long player to be released. It’s good to see that each subsequent album has built on where the previous one had left off. One thing you should be aware of is that vocalist James Graham voice is rather an acquired taste and sometimes I did find it hard to understand what he was singing. His voice a twee bit harsher than that of The Blue Nile‘s Paul Buchanan, but no less interesting.
Back to the music and this disc opens with the relatively slow burning ‘Alphabet‘ which manages to hide what the rest of this package beholds the listener. Whilst ‘Dead City‘ grabs your ear lobes and forces you to hear its robotic beat which will have you transfixed. On many levels this was similar to Manchester’s The Passage early excursions on vinyl. Next up is the single ‘Sick‘ a sparse sounding track in comparison which superbly lays bare the vocals as you can hear every syllable crystal clear.
‘Don’t Move‘ moves back to safer pastures an uptempo track which if Factory Records had still been going would have released this without a thought. In contrast ‘Nil‘ pays homage to the industrial sounds of the late 80’s. Up next was ‘Don’t Look At Me‘ which continued in the same vein to good effect. Then just as you think you sussed the band out so ‘Not Sleeping‘ slowed it all down again with some very haunting synthesisers. These gradually emerged out of the murky cacophony that took centre stage like shards of light poking out of a dark backdrop.
The previously mentioned ‘Another Bed‘ demands your attention and stands head and shoulders above the rest. If last year’s epic track was ‘Still Life‘ by The Horrors then just maybe this could possibly have the same critical success and convert some record buyers out there. ‘Kill It In The Morning‘ is another track that wishes to disorient your ears with its forceful beating rhythm. Every album should end with an instrumental like ‘A Million Ignorants‘ which soothes your ruffled mind as it bows out gracefully. Disregard this album at your peril.