When Manchester’s The Answering Machine emerged in early 2006, they did so straight into the furnace of the nation’s A&R machine. Coming on like a Lancashire lo-fi take on The Strokes, or The Libertines if they’d picked sherbet Dip Dabs over Green Lanes crack rocks, they were suave, well-dressed and cool, choosing to spend time they could have spent hiring a drummer on doing their hair instead (a drum machine named Mustafa Beat backed their damn-near-perfect pop songs back then).
They were way, way too good to be ruined by the bulbous oafs that stalk the halls of major labels. Thankfully they got out of the heat and worked out some rough edges in their own time, choosing to release records on their own terms later down the line.
The result? Well, Mustafa is in the bin now, they’ve got a real drummer, and on the evidence of the Elastica-esque ‘Obviously Cold’, the Smiths-y chimes of ‘Emergency’ and a new recording of their genius cow-punk debut single ‘Oklahoma’, they’ve shaved off the ‘near’ from the front of the phrase ‘perfect pop songs’. This is a fantastic debut.
Click here to get your copy of The Answering Machine’s ‘Another City, Another Sorry’ from the Rough Trade shop