These New Puritans are being held by many music critics as the fresh wave of avant garde talent that British music fans have been waiting for since David Bowie bumped into Brian Eno in West Berlin in the 1970s.
Don’t believe the hype folks. Hidden, the second album from this lot from Southend-on-Sea in Essex, is nothing more than a bunch of hipsters putting more energy into sounding like an art rock band than actually making of anything of any real substance.
For a band that started out with so much potential with their more than impressive EP, Now Pluvial in 2006 and striking debut LP Beat Pyramid two years later, These New Puritans seem to be a product of a band trying to run before they can crawl. While it’s admirable that these guys have their sights on being the next Can, Faust, Gang of Four or The Fall, they simply don’t deliver the goods. The album’s vision of sending scattered sounds into the stratosphere of some vacant postmodern world of minimalist anti rock n’ roll, actually sounds closer to an outtake of the TV series The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, with heavy drumbeats in the background.
Tracks like -We Want War’ are an obvious attempt to break the conventions of modern rock music and come up with something fresh: the result is an indie rock song, remixed to the sort of beats you might hear in your local Indian restaurant on a Friday night. -Attack Music’ becomes too repetitive, and with lyrics like ‘I’m not an actor / I don’t have lines to say / until I write them down on this piece of paper,’ it’s hard to keep interested.
Maybe next time TNPs should spend more time in the rehearsal room than they do buried in their record collection.