Romantic, chivalrous, quixotic and humorous, Pete and the Pirates are the type of band that can be an antidote to any kind of adversity. With a little of the quaint English charm of the Mystery Jets and a subtle sprinkling of the lascivious indie soul of Hefner, they have the kind of arch and informed strut to satiate the desires of the most ardent indie outsiders.
First noticed a few months back on a stunning compilation LP from London’s Stolen Recordings, on which one of the Pirates’ dual singers, Tom Sanders, moonlighted acoustically under the name Tap Tap), their track had a lo-fi magic that could have been the pot of gold at the bottom of any number of wilfully skilled acoustic dreamers’ rainbow. Yet this mini album takes the lo-fi dream and splays it in a million shards.
“Come on feeeeeeet / One, two threeeeeeee!” Sanders announces in the first line of the opening track, before taking us on a rakish ride of humbly triumphant indie surrealism and folk ingenuity. “One, two, three and the clock strikes three / We ain’t got time and we ain’t got free / 6.15 and we’re cooking tea – onion garlic sesame” is quaint indie Anglocism to its core, the track it’s taken from a typical example of the band’s personal kind of innovation, building to an epic lyrical riposte that blazes to the stars on sublime guitar refrains.
All seven tracks here are similarly terrific in the best traditions of artfully shambolic indie, the stand-out She Doesn’t Belong particularly sparkling with a humble romanticism, and the effect of sustained, lyrically-inspired emotional involvement won’t be purveyed better anywhere outside the world of Darren Hayman. Some fete for a debut release.
With the vocalists’ dual captaincy pointing the way for an outlandish deck of indie drop-outs, it won’t be long before your ship, too, is suitably plundered.