Time for another one of those crazy-but-true stories: a few years back, the youthful Gorky's Zygotic Mynci were up for an award at some industry shindig. The gong was going to be presented by a famous

TIME FOR ANOTHER ONE OF THOSE CRAZY-BUT-TRUE stories: a few years back, the youthful Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci were up for an award at some industry shindig. The gong was going to be presented by a famous footballer who, rather unamazingly, had a few difficulties getting to grips with the band’s funky monster of a moniker. And the ironic twist? Said soccer star was called Graeme Le Socks. Sorry, Le [I]Saux[/I].

One may think that a few albums down the line, Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci are beginning to realise the error of their ways. Certainly, ‘Gorky 5’ is a promising enough title, being both truthful (it’s their fifth LP) and catchy in a cool Led Zep/[I]Thunderbirds[/I] kind of way. The lead-in is smart too, as current 45 ‘Let’s Get Together (In Our Minds)’ represents their most commercial blast thus far. The fact that it stands out so clearly here is a testament to something or other, but we sure as hell haven’t managed to nail down what it is just yet. Maybe it’s because the single isn’t quite as gentle, as [I]lovely [/I]as its fellow tracks. Because while Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci can be many things, a lot of them here revolve around piano, violin and a few other lovely things which make lovely noises.

Take the summer breeze of ‘Dyle Fi’, or the sweet swell of ‘Only The Sea Makes Sense’, or the Eagles-esque tinge of ‘Hush The Warmth’, or the [I]”La la la”[/I]-stuffed Simon & Garfunkelisms of ‘Tsunami’ or the… oh, you must get the drift by now.

It’s not all languid loveliness. ‘Softly’ takes Mercury Rev’s spooked dissonance and feeds it slices of ELO pie, while ‘Theme From Gorky 5 (Russian Song)’ is indeed aggressive and Cossack-like. Proof positive, then, that Gorky’s still have that wicked streak, that aura which says, ‘Yes, we can still be stubborn and nervy and sing in our native tongue when we bloody well want to’.

Exemplary behaviour, obviously. Yet while Super Furries have dragged deranged narcotics-nobbled pop into the Top 12 and Catatonia have crashlanded into the nation’s psyche by virtue of writing songs masquerading as tabloid headlines, ‘Gorky 5’ is the sound of a band still shuffling around the peripheries, outsiders writing underwhelmed songs which, while surely designed to grow and become ever lovelier as time goes by, will mean diddly squat in The Big Chart World out there.

Don’t worry just yet, Boyzone.