The London Apartments - Logistics And Navigation (Beggars Banquet)
UK release date: 18 September 2006
Fans of Canada's The London Apartments (named after a crumbling block of flats in their modest locale) must be a dedicated lot. The first two songs on this EP have appeared on four of their previous recordings each. I haven't heard the other versions but I would hope that they've been honed to performable perfection for their worldwide release on Beggar's Banquet.
From the band's bulletin boards their fans are a universal troupe who're drawn to the ethereal mystery and, at times, grandeur, of the duo's mix of cold electronic noise, found sounds and raspy, whispery vocals (think Portishead out of The Cocteau Twins).
It's not about the words so much as a mood evoked, with the odd striking image to hook you. Streetlights Are Soldiers reflects that hypnotic effect flashing past row upon row of lampposts in a car at night produces, while Circuit is full of static crackles - I never realised you could get drum feedback! Summer Takes All Of My Time is perhaps the most straightforward track, but its chilly emptiness is more than redeemed by the echoing seven minute finale, Stories of Big Cities & Bigger Hearts. Its looping beat and gentle melody is relaxing without being soporific.