on 14 May 2003
The Devlins are one of those bands that you have to "discover". I first "discovered" them a few years ago supporting Del Amitri, and immediately rushed out and bought their superb second album "Waiting". I wasn't disappointed. But, as an Irish band with limited commercial clout they've remained elusively on the periphery of the music scene on this side of the Irish Sea.
Once again brothers Colin and Peter Devlin comprise the heart of the band, this time minus drummer Sean Devitt, now relegated to playing drums on only a handful of tracks. This album sees Peter Devlin in even more experimental mood, with samples and programmed drums appearing on almost every track. The band were going that way on "Waiting", so it's nice to see them develop this sound further.
"Waiting" was always going to be difficult to top, so I must admit that I approached this album with some trepidation. I need not have worried. Although I must admit that "Consent" is an odd choice for an opening song. It's not a bad song, but it never really kicks in and feels overlong. But this is misleading, for immediately afterwards we get truly great songs like "Static in the Flow", the stunningly simple "There is a light" and, the album's stand-out track, the gorgeous "In Seville". The second half of the album is a little more difficult to get into, but still contains such gems as "Wide Open", "Five Miles To Midnight" and the closing track "Vertical".
I would recommend that new listeners buy "Waiting" first, but "Consent" is a great addition to any music lover's collection.