It's Hammer Time!

The New Year means new starts, new beginnings and brings with it an unshakable optimism that things will be a little better in the forthcoming twelve months. But, as those shiny daydreams of new adventures dull; as those resolutions that you so adamantly said that you would keep falter; as those flighty ambitions seem just a little too far out of reach, a hurried crash back to land is most definitely on the cards.

This will be the New Year for most of us: broken promises, dented dreams and a great big reality check. However, this is not the New Year that Hammer No More Fingers will get or deserve.

Although the North Carolina three piece are relatively unknown on UK shores, if the media zeal currently surrounding the band is anything to go by, 2010 could see the band break through in a big way. After pricking up the ears of the likes of XFM and getting the seal of approval by his holy indie reverence, Steve Lamacq, HNMTF could make an impressive dent on the music industry with their solid debut.

‘Looking for Bruce’ is yet another triumph for Doncaster based Inhaler Records and their stellar repertoire. Inspired by early nineties indie rock, but not stealing from the books of those who came before them, the album is a confident, cohesive and hook laden delight.

From opener ‘Automobiles’ through to closer ‘I Fell Asleep’, this collection of tracks may not have any definitive standouts, but each stands tall on its own merit.

What perhaps sets this album apart from other bands of the moment and catapults them into the impressive league is the intelligent drive behind their music. ‘Nobody Knows’ with its refrain of “Tomorrow I’ll wake the hell up ‘cos today is the youngest I’ll ever be again” shows, like their early nineties indie rock brethren, they have a ‘wise beyond their young years’ quality. But with this acute sense of worldliness, the carefree buoyancy and anthemia still remain throughout the album and none more so than with single ‘Shutterbug’, which still shimmers with accomplishment after repeated listens.

As we journey through 2010, resolutions may be broken and hopes dashed but we can at least we can console ourselves that there might be some intelligent, hook driven music knocking about in the coming months, especially by way of HNMTF.