Aden Hey 19

Aden is one of those bands who most people come across by accident - their prolific compilation appearances have helped. Their previous album, Black Cow, turned up in a few top ten lists last year. Hey 19 is probably a little bit more polished than we've come to expect from Aden, but it also feels like a natural progression for a band who have reached their third album. They've also recruited some folks (Aluminum Group and the Sea and Cake) to aid in fleshing out their sound. Apart from that, though, not much has changed - the tunes ebb and flow and the lyrics are still predominantly sad. The album almost follows the template for jangly indie-pop by numbers - strummed guitars all over the place and vaguely twee vocals stuck right at the top of the mix with nice harmonies at all the appropriate places. For those who dig this kind of thing, it's an irresistible blend and Aden do it incredibly well (as do most other bands on Teenbeat, but that's another story altogether). It is kind of refreshing to hear an album that is so melody-driven, yet some of those melodies lack a truly memorable tune and that is the one weak point. (TeenBeat)