**PIC Blur-endorsed Icelandic duo move from techno to post-punk on an itchy claustrophobic debut
I Am Kloot : Natural History
Manchester troubadours deliver highly-strung debut
I Am Kloot, you see, are a million miles from the niceties of the New Acoustic Movement, and this, their debut LP, sets out their alternative agenda. It vacillates between self-loathing, cynicism and moments of profound tenderness, and really it's only their instrumentation that's traditional. Bramwell's melodies have been transformed by the sensitive spinning of bassist Pete Jobson and drummer Andy Hargreaves, and they're crucial in fulfiling I Am Kloot's promise.
Lyrically, the record's great. Explicit and honest and a master of metaphor, Bramwell is, in his own way, as fine a wordsmith as Morrissey or Stuart Murdoch. There are oddly poetic phrases here, shrouded in a multiplicity of possible meanings, that will nag at you forever. "There's blood on your legs", presses Bramwell in 'Twist'. "I love you".
The album's pinnacle, 'Because', suggests this lyrical obscurity is essential. Strip the obscure, imagistic couplets from this meditative, rolling-ocean ballad and it'd be nothing. They help form a mystical, rapturous, staggering declaration of love. And a fitting end to an album that, while not flawless, will stir you into a rare, joyous fervour.
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