Proclaimers Born Innocent

Hey, remember the Proclaimers? After becoming fodder for countless "Frosh” compilations and beer commercials since their left-field hit "I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” struck it big as the theme of Benny and Joon a decade ago, the Reid brothers return with their second collection of new songs since ’94’s Hit the Highway failed to become successful outside of their native Scotland. Produced by Edwyn Collins, who gives the album a much needed Orange Juice-ish flair at times, Born Innocent actually works better than I was willing to give it credit for on my initial listen; the title track, "Blood On Your Hands” and "There’s No Doubt” find the brothers’ ridiculously thick accents the centre of some surprisingly well produced folk rock. That said, the album’s faux-political tone, intertwined with Hallmark sentiments ("three times a mummy/ you wouldn’t know it cause she’s got a flat little tummy”) and paint-by-numbers ballads weigh the album down to the kind of level you’d probably expect from one hit wonders far past their prime. So, in the end, this is a little better than I thought it would be, but really — and call this sardonic if you wish — didn’t you already have your mind made up on this when you saw the word "Proclaimers”? (Persevere)