Edinburgh Avalanche Records

Edinburgh Avalanche Records

[a]Sputniks Down[/a] make perfect sense.

Post-rock is, and let’s not beat around the avant-bush here, the antithesis of pop. It may purport to tickle the frontal lobes, to entertain the synapses in the same way that pop engages the feet and the heart, but its frowning [I]raison d’jtre [/I]is to perplex and alienate. To deviate from its strict path is to risk alienation from the post-rock glum-club and to introduce pop into its sacred circle is a crime beyond punishment.

Yet this is exactly what [a]Sputniks Down[/a] have done. The teenage threesome might look stern (faded T-shirts and [a]Mogwai[/a]-approved reticence abound), but the latest additions to Edinburgh’s Human Condition label have far more mischievous pleasures in mind. Like making their guitars squawk like circling vultures (‘Songs For The Tiny Radio Children’) and stretching synth interlude ‘MM’ into wispy strands of Eno-esque gorgeousness.

Only when they lapse into po-facery do the Down strike a false note, with token go-slow strum ‘ME’ wheezing like an exhausted Arab Strap. It is, however, only a blip. By the end of their set, bassist Andrew Blue and guitar-throttler David Roy are locked in giggling, red-faced combat – shoulders squared, instruments rutting and beautiful, pop-shaped notes spinning off into the heavens.

They may prompt questions in post-rock parliament but, for the rest of us, [a]Sputniks Down[/a] make perfect sense.