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30 May 2011 | Format: MP3

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By Syriat TOP 500 REVIEWER on 31 May 2011
Format: Audio CD
Some albums come along and you know you will be hearing them for a while. This is one of those. Its perfect for the summer (should we get one this year). Its poppy, upbeat and harks back to a bygone era (Phil Spector has been mentioned too many times already in connection with this band) whilst sounding current.
It starts off with Abducted which breezes along with ease, guitars and percussion all combining here for a feel good effect. These two sure do make a lot of noise for a duo. Yes I am sure they are getting help but this is no White Stripes style duo with the bare essentials. More it is a band sound. You Know What I Mean could have been from the 60's - it really sounds like some of the better studio produced female vocalists of that time. Never Heal Myself is another track that grabs instantly with an opening of acoustic guitar and percussion. You get the feel that under the excellent songs there are some brooding lyrics about love lost and won. Sometimes the riff of electric guitar comes into give a brooding feel - as in Never Saw The Point. And at points on this album I am reminded of My Girls by The Animal Collective. Its almost there with its sound and approach. Especially on Bad Things. Or perhaps I am hearing things.

If this gets any airplay at all it will sell lots and have many indie kids this summer swooning. Its rather fantastic fun. And may well become a five star album for this reader with repeated plays.
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Format: Audio CD
The Cults' highly hyped debut album begs the question: is it worth the attention? Well, it's a yes & a no. It's an unqualified yes to the songs, the vocals & the arrangements. The compositions are not only good but in some cases quite exceptional & the echo-plastered vocals have an affecting oriental flavour which I find very pleasing indeed. So far so good, then. So why the no? Because all of this combo's obvious potential is severely compromised by one of the most kack-handed & woefully misguided productions that I've heard in my life. The production is, simply, awful. The master tracks have been subjected to a wholesale indiscriminate wall of reverb that succeeds only in making it all sound as if it was recorded in a tin can, which tries the patience after three or four tracks & is a decidedly unpleasant experience when listening to the album from start to finish. What is most alarming is that they evidently intended it to be this way, which smacks of a wilful indulgence that ends up disrespecting the qualities of their own music. There is no bottom-end thrust at all (needs a boost, I'm afraid) & practically all of the impressive detail in the treble registers is entirely lost in the reverb blur. If you have the software you can correct this yourself at home, of course, & the album will sound a whole lot better for it- so much better, in fact, that you will share my dismay that a major record company could release the record in this condition without exercising some quality control. But for all that, the songs & vocals performances are infectious enough to get under your skin & stay there- which is why it gets 4 instead of 3 stars. With a more sympathetic production, this could have been one of the most attractive offerings of the year to date. As it stands, however, it's the most frustrating by a long mile. It's a shame, because hidden inside this tin can fiasco is a damn fine record which deserves much much better.
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Format: Audio CD
I bought this on whim. No real reason. Saw a review which gave it 4 stars but then hey I read reviews every week giving albums 4 stars. But for some reason I listened to a snippet of Abducted on itunes and was hooked. I guess I could have stayed there but also decided to listen to the rest and ultimatley ended up with the album.

All I can say is I love it. 11 sparse, Phil Spector wall of sound style tunes that enter your brain and stay there. Dreamy vocals, hazy sounds, background synth bubbles, 60's guitar strummings, echoes of Motown flitting in and out. A truly beautiful thing.

My advice? Buy it. Sometimes you have to do things on a whim!
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By The Wolf TOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 Oct. 2011
Format: Audio CD
Cults are New York Duo Madeline Follin, who sings and Brian Oblivion (ahem)
who plays guitar and percussion and contributes additional vocals. In coming
to a view about whether or not they deserve our attention we are faced with a
small dilemma. There are quite a few double-acts out there in the listening
world right now who have made a mission of plundering the sixties in the hope
of finding new expression and relevance in that turbulent decade's cold ashes.
The Raveonettes and Cat's Eyes have already deported themselves well in similar
territory and both managed to deliver albums which deigned to capture, in dark
and foreboding sonic hues, the spirit of an age long-gone under the horizon.

Cults' contribution to this burgeoning genre, however, favours a lighter touch.
They write jolly good tunes. Ms Follin sings them well with a thin-and-crispy
voice which is high on cool but somewhat lacking in substance but this does
not really matter at all. Her approach is enthusiastic and this more than makes
up for her technical shortcomings. Take a song like 'Never Heal Myself' : the
strong melody, sparkling arrangement and sense of summery abandon is pretty
nigh irresistible. Single 'Go Outside', too, manages to keep the fires of the
summer of love burning in dense swathes of reverb and quasi-psychedelic bonhomie.
The lovely 'You Know What I Mean' would have gone down a storm at at a wedding
reception in Scarborough in 1963 and the spirit of Merseyside seems alive and
well in the delightfully jaunty 'Never Saw The Point' and 'Bumper'. It is to
'Walk At Night', however, which I would draw your attention for elucidation
of Ms Follin's and Mr Oblivion's not insignificant songwriting abilities.
Read more ›
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