Electric Soft Parade – ‘Idiots’

Electric Soft Parade - 'Idiots'

Score

Electric soft back!

Returning after an electric soft hiatus of six electric soft years, the Electric Soft Parade are electric soft back! ‘Idiots’ initially invites a description – winsome, sparkling, Beatles-y ­– that sets alarm bells ringing, but the album thrives when the brothers White play to their strengths. These include restrained power pop, as on unfuckwithable opener ‘The Sun Never Sets Around Here’, and woozy slow-burn epics like ‘The Corner Of Highdown And Montefiore’. Their impeccable impression of ‘Summerteeth’-era Wilco, best exhibited by ‘Brother, You Must Walk Your Path Alone’, is also a total treat. Sadly there’s a deal-breaking second half to this album, exemplified by a regrettable harmony overload on the cloyingly twee meltdown ‘Mr Mitchell’, a song so drippy it’s as unlistenable as a million malfunctioning taps. When the energy levels fall off entirely on the maudlin piano-powered closer ‘Never Again’, ‘Idiots’’ early signs of promise seem a pleasant but distant memory.

Thom Gibbs

Details

Record label: Helium
Release date: 17 Jun, 2013