'Amber' is Clearlake's third album, produced over a few years and in several studios. Its predecessors, the twee 'Lido' followed by the sombre, dark 'Cedars' have laid the groundwork for a perfect offering. 'Amber' commences with merciless drums and guitars in "No Kind of Life", setting the agenda of an album which will not hold back - "Neon" is a stomping track which will get even the most stolid music snob nodding along to the beat. The title track, "Amber", features the best cello score since the work of Nick Drake. The album goes from angry frustration ["I Hate it That I Got What I Wanted"] to despair ["Dreamt That You Died"], but manages to tread a line which makes the album well structured and less overbearing than the respective tweeness and darkness of Clearlake's earlier works. Once again, Domino recording co. has allowed a superb band to develop freely and create a work of sublime musical talent. It would be a crime for 'Amber' to be outside the top 10 of albums released this year, regardless of the big-name releases in the upcoming 12 months. This is one album you will repeatedly come back to, and will satiate hardened Clearlake residents and newcomers alike.