8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: A Certain Trigger (Audio CD)
This album first came to my notice in October 2005,when it had in fact been released earlier in May. I had seen Maximo Park on Jools Holland's "Later" and enjoyed their performance.They seemed to stand alone amongst other pop rock/art rock bands.I thought I would like to buy their debut CD"A Certain Trigger" and I finally did so in the early autumn,not knowing what to expect. I was even unsure whether I would like the tracks.
How wrong was I?? From the moment the CD hit my player I was instantly hooked by the opening drum and guitar bars of the first track "Signal and Sign."This anthem to changing life direction and getting motivated awoke my interest and lit the blue touchpaper for the rest of the album. Definite and direct,it sets the tone for the other twelve songs on the album.
From then on I never looked back. There isn't a dull,dud or depressing track on this album. It speeds along with the urgency of a train heading to its destination. It has a message for everyone.
Frontman Paul Smith has a distinctive rock voice. It is one that HAS to be listened to. At times it can just border on the light operatic,and there is plenty of melody there. Emotion runs high throughout his vocal delivery and as for his Geordie accent,it adds masses of charm and at times lends a dangerous edge to the words and music.
Tracks such as"Apply Some Pressure",which urge the listener to rethink,if things in life go wrong.The keyboards chorus is a very catchy one,with jangly piano chords,backing organ and a driving guitar and drum rhythm.
Other standout songs include "Graffiti",which concentrate on the recurring theme of provincial boredom and personal daring(intriguing stuff)-"Going Missing" which is a wonderful song.
Ringing guitarwork accompany the chorus in this one,and we feel the sadness and personal loss experienced by the singer.
One to bring tears to the eyes,but the upside is that the chorus is immensely singable.
Further notable tracks include "I Want You To Stay" which strikes a resounding chord. It's bittersweet,anguished and sad. But there's not a jot of depression in this track. In fact the lines of this song send shivers down the spine.
And then there's my personal favourite "Once,A Glimpse". Dramatic,desperate,highly-charged,intensely emotional,it contains the album's title line. Paul's vocals are as powerful as ever,not quite understanding why it has all gone wrong again emotionally. If high drama is your bag,this song will do it for you.
I could go on, but let's just say that,if you haven't already added ACT to your Millennium album collection, then it's not too late to do so. Its songs will steal their way into your heart and leave your ears wanting to hear more music from this remarkably talented band.
I recently learned that album sales for ACT went past Silver in 2005.
In my opinion,they are Pure Gold.