Modern English Soundtrack

At this point, nobody was expecting another album from Modern English. After all, it's been 14 years since the last one, and an astonishing 28 years since they were propelled into the "one hit wonder hall of fame" with "I Melt With You." Yet here they are with album number seven and even more surprising, it's good. Soundtrack doesn't offer much in the way of surprises, sounding like a compilation of the band's finer moments. It looks like a Modern English album, thanks to the classic v23 artwork that has followed them throughout their career, even if their days on the 4AD label are long behind them. They've even recruited Hugh Jones (who produced their beloved early albums) to try and recapture that magic. There's nothing that reaches the heights of their big hit, but "It's Ok," with its Lightning Seeds-like, soaring chorus, gets pretty close. The band still have a knack for melodrama, although they keep it on the lighter side of the brooding spectrum ― even the gloomy title track has a bit of a brighter sheen to it. Soundtrack is a surprisingly solid album, considering the circumstances, and a welcome return. (Darla)