Ten years ago was a good year for British rock music, seeing debuts from Hundred Reasons and The Libertines, Idlewild’s The Remote Part, and amongst others, Feeder’s Comfort In Sound. It’s the Welshmen who had a pretty heavy influence on A, with a number of songs on this breakthrough disc giving a pretty good impression of Jon Lee era Feeder.
Lead single “Nothing” is the song everyone is going to remember – a slab of atypical nu-metal stylings, with a lot of trendy turntable scratching a la Linking Park – but hidden away on Hi-Fi Serious are a number of really good punk-inflected rockers. “Six O’Clock On A Tube Stop” is the most reminiscient of Feeder, while “Starbucks” is a solid mid-tempo romp through boring jobs.
The best of the rest is probably “Pacific Ocean Blue” – ‘it’s OK to beat the living shit from the drum kit’ is a brilliant opening line, and Jason Perry opens up and sings really rather well here. Unsurprisingly, the rhythm section have found alternative work with the Bloodhound Gang: The Yin as drummer, and Daniel P Carter as guitarist. Whilst A never really go for belly laughs, it’s never exactly dark and depressing in the world of Suffolk’s greatest punk-pop band.
All in all, nothing here changed worlds, but for a commute or for a shout-along on a long drive, you can’t beat this kind of thing. A do it well, and you can’t ask for more.
Key Tracks: Nothing/Something’s Going On/Starbucks/Pacific Ocean Blue