Signalmen Falsetto Teeth

The Signalmen love their guitars, a lot. Thankfully, they love to do something a little more unconventional with them, as if they are trying their utmost to defy categorisation. And they are relatively successful on that front because I'm not quite sure what to make of them - their press releases mention bands like Television, but I'm not completely convinced about that, because they lack the sonic invention of that band. Yet there are times when the two guitars play off each other in angular ways that are not the usual fodder of rock bands, particularly on the longer songs that have extended guitar workouts. You can blend in some convention on top of that also because the vocal harmonies wouldn't sound out of place on a Byrds album, or at least a Grateful Dead album. And that's the downside of Falsetto Teeth, because it starts off so promising, with the incredibly accessible "Believe‚" and then doesn't live up to that potential; there are moments such as "Clip My Wings" and "Little Fish" that are rather good, but much of the record just meanders along without any direction. Falsetto Teeth is the kind of album that is very much an acquired taste; even if you do like it a lot, there's a good chance you won't feel that way initially. All I can suggest is perseverance, and you might be happy with the end result. (Parasol)