Malcolm Middleton’s announcement of his intention to “try something different” after he was done with 2009’s ‘Waxing Gibbous’ might have seemed an endeavour fated to be undone by his own all-pervading Malcolm Middleton-nes. Here the Scottish arch-miserablist has succeeded admirably. For, while ‘HDBA’ is a largely instrumental affair, one whose main musical cues are taken from ’80s power-pop and which only sparingly uses Middleton’s calling-card – that misanthropic, oddly comforting Caledonian burr – it’s a substantial and rewarding work: ‘Asklipiio’, for one, is up there with his very best.
- Record label: Chemikal Underground
- Release date: 16 Apr, 2012