Erasure Nightbird

For any band to stay together for 20 years is quite a feat these days and during their long career Erasure haven’t strayed too far from the pop template thath has served them so well. Periodically, they have mixed things up with contributions from unexpected guests like Diamanda Galas or recording an entire album of cover versions, but Nightbird, their 11th studio album, doesn’t rely on any such gimmicks at all; this is Erasure doing what they do best. They might have mellowed somewhat, meaning there are less disco anthems than before, but they still can still pen a memorable synth-pop tune and that is exactly what their fans will expect. There are some songs that sound like they are simply going through the motions, but the good do outnumber the bad. Just. At the end of the day, Nightbird is just another Erasure album —there’s absolutely nothing new on offer. It might seem a little lazy to rely on the same old tricks but after their last couple of albums misfired, who can blame them for returning to their roots again. It might sound a little dated, but that just leaves them better placed to take advantage of the ’80s revival. (Mute)