The Kaiser's second offering shows us a classic pop band at the peak of their form. That won't much please those who liked the rougher edge of some of the tracks on "Employment" - but for those who like polished pop in the classic style, then this one is for you.
There's only a couple of tracks on this album that would not make a creditable single - the whole thing is VERY radio friendly, and there's nothing wrong with that. None of the songs outstay their welcome - they have that knack of brevity that I for one admire greatly in the best of modern music - no self-indulgent 15 minute rock operas here.
The sticky tunes on this are "Ruby" - surely destined to become a classic pop/rock hit of the 2000s, "Everything is Average Nowadays", "Heat Dies Down", "I Can Do Without You" - and these can all, easily, be big hit singles. The slightly less sticky, but still very hooky "Angry Mob", "Love's Not a Competition.." and "Highroyds" also have that potential.
The production is superb throughout, with the lyrics coming through clearly - and good lyrics some of them are - and most tracks have a very deep layered texture with little touches of arrangement or instrumentation yielding something extra each time you hear them.
The Kaisers - on this album at least - frequently remind me of Squeeze when they were at the top of their game - they have that upbeatness in their playing and sound. They sound happy - they're having a great time.
If you liked the singles from "Employment" then buy this album, you'll like it.