You know how it is, you've long since taken the plug off your amp, to use on your computer. The slurry on Radio Fab brings you out in hives. And you look on hopelessly, as the trad guitar band refuses

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Manchester Night & Day

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Manchester Night & Day

You know how it is, you’ve long since taken the plug off your amp, to use on your computer. The slurry on Radio Fab brings you out in hives. And you look on hopelessly, as the trad guitar band refuses to die, struggling on like the plucky Tommy who doesn’t realise that there’s a big hole where his guts used to be. Then you hear [a]Haven[/a]. And learn that the best thing about cynicism is being proved wrong.

Four ostensibly unremarkable kids who write proper, grown-up rock songs, adopted-Mancunians [a]Haven[/a] are life-affirmingly brilliant. Their songs – hovering somewhere between [a]Oasis[/a] and Jeff Buckley – are anthemic, but graceful and economic, bathed in the same languid glow as Teenage Fanclub, and bolstered by declarative 10ft-tall choruses. Not to mention Gary Briggs, whose honeyed, almost bluesy voice turns itself inside out, reaching right into the emotional crannies of these songs.

‘Say Something’ is a widescreen jangle that grows and grows until you want to hug strangers. ‘Change Direction’ is Haven at their quicksilver best, all tumbles of guitar and balletic falsetto. There’s rich, dark stuff too; ‘Beautiful Things’ is dirty, awkward, held together with threads of melody, ‘Lie Down’ is tight, wired, all rippling guitars atop a dark rumble, a warning, of drums.

Haven themselves may not swagger about like world domination is a couple of singles away, but their songs certainly do. Haven will be massive: remember where you read it first.