Steven Lindsay Kite

In the annals of classy Scottish pop music from the ’80s, two names are usually mentioned: the Blue Nile and the Big Dish. While the latter might have not gained as much exposure, even in their native land, Swimmer is a classic that can hold its own against anything else from that time. They released two more equally accomplished albums, never finding an audience, before disappearing into the mists. In 2004, the band’s singer Steven Lindsay reappeared with one of that year’s most understated and underappreciated albums, Exit Music. It seemed like the world had finally caught up with him, although he wasn’t really doing anything different, and that’s also true of his second solo album. Kite sees Lindsay still making sophisticated music that’s earnest and glossy, but not in a bad way. It doesn’t repeat the same mistake as its predecessor, giving the songs long enough to develop, rather than fading in and out like overheard conversations in a crowded room. The only real misstep is an ill-informed cover of the Pixies’ "Monkey Gone To Heaven,” which doesn’t add anything to the original, although it will probably get him some exposure. While not for everyone, people who succumbed to the charms of Damien Rice and his ilk might be pleasantly surprised by what’s on offer. (Echo)