IN&OUTTONIGHT REVIEWS 32 Monday, 14 September 2009 London Lite DaviD Gray may have had just two top 10 singles in the past decade, but both his last two albums have gone straight to number one -- pretty remarkable for an artist best known for Babylon, an electronica-flecked hit almost 10 years ago. Draw The Line is pretty much more of the same. Earnest, folky pop with the occasional arresting image. Fugitive is the obvious single, but it suffers from having a chorus far too similar to Elton Johns Dont Let The Sun Go Down On Me, while the annie Lennox duet Full Steam ahead is probably the best track on Grays sixth studio album. PC REVIEWSMUSIC Museemerge into the light Rocketnroll: Elbows Guy Garvey, above; left, a fancy-dress reveller SpacecadetshittheWightnote THE BIG NOISE Muse TheResistance(Warners,12.72) HHHII PAUL CONNOLLY DRUM&BASS Sub Focus SubFocus (RamRecords,11.74) HHHHI Nick DOuwma is now a drum & bass poster- boy, thanks to music mag covers, headlining Ram at matter and producing tracks by The Prodigy and Empire Of The Sun. Last month his single Rock it (a dance chart No1) even hit the uk charts, proving his genre neednt sit on the sidelines when melodies emerge over basslines and other tempos (house, techno, dub-step) get a look in. His fiercely anticipated debut album collates crossover tracks such as Vaporise, euphorically peaceful Last Jungle and could This Be Real -- where gloopy, dub basslines, jazz piano and glitchy disco vocals combine -- on a record every dance-head should file with commix, chase & Status and Subbys boss, andy c. M DE L GivEn the amount of hype over the 18-year-old Essex gel, this debut has a lot to live up to. But its not bad at all. in terms of blonde, disposable pop, its easily as good as, well, The Saturdays. Mama Do is the first and best song, but is far from being the only good one on an album with more hooks than a tackle shop. Theres Boys and Girls, a perky pop anthem with all the teenage excitement of Topshop on a Saturday, and Band aid, which does a good impression of a Destinys Child hit. aside from the fact that amy Winehouse could probably sue for her sound back, Pixie Lott is pretty magic. AMBER COWAN FESTIVAL Bestival IsleOfWight HHHHI MARTHA DE LACEY To order any CD reviewed, call The London Lite CD service on 01634 832789. All prices include P&P POP Pixie Lott TurnItUp (Mercury,12.72) HHHII HIP HOP Jay-Z TheBlueprint3 (ROCNation,12.72) HHHII THE first five tracks of the official follow-up to 2002s The Blueprint2: The Gift & The curse are uniformly brilliant. what we Talkin about, bizarrely featuring Luke Steele from aussie scenesters Empire Of The Sun, shimmers like tarnished gold, while D.O.a. (Death Of auto-Tune) is a blistering and hook-heavy attack on the ubiquitous use of auto-tune in rap studios. But the real pearls are Run This Town with Rihannas creamy vocals adding loveliness to the spiky underpinning and Empire State Of mind, with its fabulous chorus hook from alicia keys. Then off the cliff The Blueprint 3 dives, blown over by a strange storm of self-justification and drab tunes. PC POP David Gray DrawTheLine (Polydor,12.72)) HHHII L aST month Dom Howard, the drummer for Devonian three- piece muse, said: Not every- one gets the monty Python as- pect to our music but its there. There are some serious ideas, but a lot of the musical accompaniments and flourishes are done in a spirit of fun. were often laughing as we record. its useful to bear this quote in mind as you listen to i Belong To You (mon coeur SOuvre a Toi), track nine on muses fifth studio album. The band has carefully cultivated this barmy reputa- tion but -- having interviewed them twice -- id always assumed that they played a pretty straight bat. But listening to i Belong To You, which kicks off like mika covering New Radicals but in fact draws inspiration from an aria from 19th-century opera Samson and Delilah, has Bellamy groan- ing in French before trumping the pre- posterousness with, wait for it, a clarinet solo, it hits you: they cannot be serious. muses idiosyncratic brand of grand, operatic pop does not brook indifference, especially on 2006s barking Black Holes and Revelations. People either love or loathe them. You cannot listen to Bellamys melodramatic glissando vocals swooping over the musics complex constructs without either laughing out loud at muses overwhelming ambition or being enthralled by their daring. But what id never considered was a sense of humour. its certainly not overly apparent on the album opener and single The uprising, on which Bellamy sings of his hope of a revolution against Them (lizard masters, the government, im not sure) and, unkindly, wishes heart attacks on cEOs. its all a bit sixth-form. Thats nothing compared to the cen- trepiece (and weakest track) The united States Of Eurasia, a rubbish attempt at geopolitical analysis on which Bellamy metaphorically rips off his clothes to reveal a sequined Freddie mercury jumpsuit its bombastic and silly (not bad things, necessarily) but the tune is beyond anaemic. Oddly enough, The Resistance works best when muse stray into conventional pop territory. The title track reflects their Queen obsession through a prism of early u2 and trance, while Guiding Light is magnificently melodramatic. as for the closing Exogenesis Symphony trilogy, well, its truly off the end of the ludicrous scale. chaps, youre having a laugh. arent you? Funny men: Muse say they make humorous music THOuGH its a music festival, its hard to catch any bands at Rob da Banks isle of wight fancy-dress party. Once youve spent hours dancing your way into silly outfits by your tent, there is barely an hour of daylight to spend chasing others in superlative costumes before youve stumbled over any musical maestros. This year was no different -- the space theme saw ET on Elliots bicycle, eight-year- olds dressed as 19ft aliens, and the Jetsons battling asterix with the tail of a space serpent. Thankfully, as you tumbled through the grass in hysteria, you managed to roll past Soulwaxs stupendous original tunes before somersaulting into the Big Top to catch their epic set as their 2manyDJs alter ego. The skipping and gleeful jumping meant that you could catch Fleet Foxes alfresco beauty before swooshing into The Big Pink -- every musos favourite noisy shoegaze duo -- and darting up to the Oxfam tent to buy your bodyweight in animal print scarves. Sadly, every festival has its horrors, and although the actual Horrors provided some very aesthetically pleasing, sultry, kaleidoscopic pop, the true horror of the three-day festival was Fridays performance by the usually perfect mGmT who, in this case, staggered on stage at the end of their tour, half an hour late, to destroy the atmosphere with an unrecognisable, wobbly, slurred and stuttery version of kids. Last night saw Elbow set fire to the main stage with their 2008 mercury- winning album, only for two giant, tent-sized inflatable Gaymer cider apples to nab the limelight. But then, Bestival has always been about the laughter more than the music. index.html2.html3.html4.html5.html6.html7.html8.html9.html10.html11.html12.html13.html14.html15.html16.html17.html18.html19.html20.html21.html22.html23.html24.html25.html26.html27.html28.html29.html30.html31.html32.html33.html34.html35.html36.html37.html38.html39.html40.html41.html42.html43.html44.html45.html46.html47.html