I have a long-standing personal tenet that good concept albums are good despite the fact they are concept albums. This has held up well for me over the years but Pram Town is that rarest of beasts: a concept album the concept of which actually adds to, rather than detracting from, the music and the overall experience. This is partly because the concept is so simple and emotionally powerful - two convergent narratives of disappointed optimism; one about a relationship, the other about town planning. It is a good test that you can actually understand and follow the concept from the music alone (more or less). This would mean nothing of course if the songs were rubbish. But this is Darren… Read more
The older I get the more English I get, and this is a very English Band. At first "See you after the War" does not sound perfect: some of the melody lines are a bit too obvious maybe; the odd lyric grates a little. But as John Peel understood very well (and far too many music journalists fail to understand) music is not about perfection - it is about how it makes you feel. As I drive home from work through the countryside, with the sun setting on the horizon and this album playing, I feel happy to be alive, happy to be English, and very very happy to be a Decoration fan.
Doesn't look like anyone else is going to review this so I suppose, at the risk of appearing a Hayman obsessive, I am going to have to fill the yawning gap. This album is something of a return to the Hefner style circa We Love The City only with more instruments and better lyrics. It thus represents the ideal chance for those misguided souls who lost the faith during or after Dead Media to come back to the fold. There is nothing as good as "Good Fruit" here but there are 12 excellent songs that I defy anyone not to like.