2:54 2:54

London, UK four-piece 2:54 play the kind of atmospheric, shoegazing alt-rock that screams for the Midas touch of Alan Moulder (My Bloody Valentine, Swervedriver). So it should come as no surprise that the influential producer/mixer answered their call. Led by sisters Hannah and Colette Thurlow, 2:54 brought in Moulder to mix and Rob Ellis (PJ Harvey, Placebo) to produce their self-titled debut. That decision paid off for the Londoners, as the partnership has instilled their music with just the kind of '90s-indebted vibes those two men specialize in. Their formula is both familiar and dependable: hypnotic, spiralling guitars, driving rock rhythms, sullen, dizzying melodies and full, spacious song structures. But it's hard to find an act out there doing all of that better than 2:54 right now. (Twenty years ago, however? That's another story.) Hints of Interpol, Garbage, Curve and the xx flood into their compositions, all converging on the robust yet iridescent "Scarlet" and the overdrive-gushing "Creeping." Sure, most Melvins fans won't fall head over heels for this (their moniker comes from the thunderous 2:54 mark of (A) Senile Animal's "A History of Bad Men"), but 2:54 have made a debut album that pulls you in, immerses you and haunts you ever so slightly. That is, until you give in and play it again. (Fat Possum)