This Many Boyfriends - This Many Boyfriends
(Angular Recording Corporation)
By: Rob Gannon
If you were to take equal parts the dry British lyricism of, perhaps, Pulp and, say, the scruffy retro delivery of Let’s Wrestle, dress the delightful indie/pop hybrid in a vintage Vaselines shirt circa C86, have it knock out witty art-punk called, for example, “I Don’t Like You (‘Cos You Don’t Like The Pastels)” or otherwise cutesy yet scrappy, sub-three-minute blasts of melody, you’d have most of the major components for a posthumous Kurt Cobain endorsement, right? You’d also have rough-and-ready Leeds-based lads This Many Boyfriends.
It goes without saying that this is all only as suitable as it should be for a band named after a track by playful 80s DIY indie-punk outfit Beat Happening, who, along with The Pastels of course, are far from the only band to be referenced or name-checked during this tight self-titled debut, on which, rather obviously, Ryan Jarman has been roped in for production duty. The wry and excellent “(I Should Be A) Communist” existed well before Jarman’s stint at the controls, but wow doesn’t it hark back to 2004 when The Cribs were still good all the same?
Truth be told there are few surprises here, but when the boys strike energetic, ramshackle gold like “Young Lovers Go Pop!”, as well as the tin-pot would-be Strokes cover “Starling”, it’s impossible not to shake your awkward indie rear to their jangling riffs. And, when it’s delivered with as large a beam as that which comes free with the joyous levelling of schoolyard bullying that is “That’s What Diaries Are For” you can hear another rustle from beyond the grave too – John Peel smiling himself to sleep eternal – and endorsements don’t come much better than that.
Advised downloads: “(I Should Be A) Communist” and “Young Lovers Go Pop!”.
This Many Boyfriends is released October 8th 2012 on Angular Recording Corporation.