A band certainly worthy of researching before digging into your pockets, not my cup of tea
Some things in life pain us because they're both necessary and totally mundane, luckily for those of us who don't have to review The Research's debut album, listening to it is not a necessity but an optional indulgence, yet take my word for it, 'twould be a mundane endeavour to sit through the whole of 'Breaking Up' by choice and I don't see it happening too much the world over.
Kid Carpet released his silly sounding opus last year and people dug it for its estranged originality, which is understandable for it is out of the ordinary, but its hook is in the fact that only that album would ever be able to get away with it. So when another act come along sounding pretty much the same you know you've heard it all before and this is going to be a bore and a chore, as it is. Cashing in on the remote carefree, kiddy-pop-for-adults zeitgeist that's going around at the moment this album just sounds poor and uninspired in comparison to those that have done it right such as The Boy Least Likely To. Alike to Don's Mobile Barbers there's not much going on in the music, but their thing is in the fact there's only two of them, whereas The Research are a four-piece sounding like, at most, a two-piece; the music's flat and empty and, to be frank, just dire.
Ok, Ok... bear with me. So it starts with 'The Way You Used To Smile' and that song really is a portend of things to come, a trashy sounding keyboard, boring bass line, tinny drums banging bad beats and a whine of a voice that's childishly lugubrious; it's not sweet in its pubescent innocence and perception of the world such as you can appreciate with The Boy Least Likely To, and nor is it anywhere near Alec Ounsworth's (Clap Your Hands) startling uninhibited adulthood howl, no, the vocals, provided by the three members of the band at times, sound just like a little kid being boorishly annoying.
'C'mon Chameleon' is a prefect example of the rubbish that's present throughout, the only tune that stands out amongst the pack is 'Ba Ba Ba' just for being more bearable than the rest. The lyrics are very youthfully introspective, very geeky, dealing with adolescent rejection and the quest for love and all that, but not in an artistic or interesting way, just with straightforwardly phrased lines that strive to be comical but fall short, "When you're in Spain with whatever his name is, I'll forget you in the taxi", just doesn't quite cut it.
Now we're nearing track number 14, unchartered territory, a place few people will go, but there isn't a punch line waiting at the end, it doesn't suddenly get good just as a curse for all those who didn't believe strongly enough, just to let you know... It ends chorally, with a hymnal 'Splitting Hairs' which in fact does sound quite a lot better to any of the preceding monstrosities, if it was ending an album of any worth you'd be left contented, however... c'est la vie. Well, as far as cups of tea go, mine's a coffee...