The Press Article
Can a fun young band grow up without losing the very qualities that made it worth following in the first place?
In this case, at least, the answer is yes, it can. Supergrass, a British pop-rock trio whose 1995 debut burst forth with pop smarts and spunky energy, has now "matured." On this, its third and most ambitious disc, the group has cut back on the adrenaline without curtailing the whimsical treble that made its initial CD so entertaining. And though the music of the early Beatles remains a substantial influence, the band has now added later-'60s Stones and art rock touches, early '70s glam rock, and even '90s post-Radiohead dreaminess into its stylistic mix.
The catchy, though unremarkable, single, "Pumping on Your Stereo," has already been dubbed an MTV "Breakthrough Video," but it merely hints at the depth of the album, which includes the complex "Faraway," the amusing but also fairly mesmerizing "Jesus Came From Outta Space," and the pretty "Shotover Hill," with its thoughtful strings and elegant timpani accents. It all comes together on the terrific opening track, "Moving," which alternates between an ethereal, Radiohead-like verse and an infectious, almost disco-pop chorus. Throughout, singer Gaz Coombes shows that he has continued to grow as a vocalist, working elements of both Thom Yorke and Mick Jagger into his bag of tricks.
At times, Supergrass' bouncy retro style sounds a little too much like other retro '60s tunes (both "Your Love" and "Beautiful People" are set to a piano-driven groove that strongly recalls Fastball's hit "The Way"), and the group seems to like its emotional content lighter than, say, the weightier, darker moods of The Verve. Yet this album has a lot to offer and should certainly be recommended to fans of either Oasis or Radiohead.
Wall Of Sound - April 2000