Some Cities (Capitol)

SXSW Records


Some Cities (Capitol)

With their previous releases, Manchester's Doves never sounded as though they were from UK's famously overcast industrial outcropping/musical paradise. Arriving too late for both the baggy mad days of Madchester raves and the cool Britannian Britpop, their sound – pounding backbeats swathed in glittering, soulful melodies that swelled and crested like the black waves off Gibraltar – was unique in a way others were not (hello, Elbow). Some Cities builds on the band's propensity for melodic grandeur and achieves pure sonic bliss in the bargain. It's time for Mancunians everywhere to put aside their childish Gallaghers and take up with the Williamses. Twins Jez and Andy Williams, along with frontman Jimi Goodwin, scuffle with brilliance throughout, besting 2002's miraculous sophomore album The Last Broadcast with the urban stomp of breakneck single "Black and White Town," the greatest hit Phil Spector never produced. "Snowden"s gossamer vocals and glistening guitar crescendos reach for the clouds, adrift in the sort of aural ecstasy fans of Britrock have been pining for since the heyday of Marr and you-know-who. And then there's the haunted, piano-based "Shadows of Salford," a hushed, elegiac phantom of a song birthed to be heard best, one suspects, emanating from an aging, pre-Blitz Victrola. Genius is a word used too frequently in the UK music press, but when it comes to Doves, it simply cannot be said enough. (Thursday, March 17, 1am @ La Zona Rosa)


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