Album Reviews

The Spinto Band – Nice and Nicely Done

(Radiate) UK release date: 29 May 2006

Cottage industries always creep out from time to time from leftfield and surprise you with the depth and ambition simmering away on the sidelines. Such is the case with The Spinto Band, who have been serving up geek melodies and glee by the bucket (and spade) full for over eight years and seven home-released albums, despite the average age of band members being 20.

They serve up the same kind of quirky pop-folk-indie omelette as The Flaming Lips in their blessed-out bubblegum psychedelia that swoops from beauty to irksomely catchy melodies designed to slap you round the head to revel in the ringing in your ears in one sly swoop.

This is like an indie pick’n’mix in the deluge of engagingly hummable tunes (Brown Boxes even features a Slavic-sounding humming outro) sprouting from prime pop fertilizer with rich, textured guitars, and multiple-part vocal harmonies. With sly glances towards the kind of eighties-referencing smarts that has seen Arcade Fire and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah! reap rewards, this differs by being 100% life-affirming exuberant fodder that fizzes along with only the brio and verve that a band of 19-year-olds can.

Single Oh Mandy (not even from the same planet as feckin’ Westlife) is a sprightly addictive roll of mandolin-led yearning, like those primetime homemade ‘folkers’ Grandaddy at their best. Like watching an episode of Happy Days, wearing a gingham shirt AND doing a silly little finger-poppin’ dance all at once. This is the kind of multi-tasking idiocy this conjures up. And you would do it all unashamedly to this song.

Spy vs Spy pogos along on a New Wave spike that flicks hair-gel at The Cars. Conflict seems to be a common theme with the mock boxing titles of Trust vs Mistrust and Spy Vs Spy but its never done with angst. Trust features a choir of would be backing chimps with acres of ‘ah-oohs’, whilst Spy.. just hops along on a tight drum and organ undercarriage that surges on waves of peaking melodies that roll out like a perfect wave of noise.

Late’s insanely catchy “I think you’re suuuuuuuuuuuu-personic, your science hurts” chorus races along threatening to trip itself up like a puppy in its lead with all its galloping grace that makes a budding love affair pulse with sweaty palms, pounding piano lines and gloriously deadpan vocals.

Closing with Mountains starts like a geeks blues trying to strut like a rooster but ends up looking (knowingly) like a puffed-up pigeon.

Make some room in your life for The Spinto Band. They won’t make a mess and are guaranteed to brighten the darkest corners with some glee-pop and happy-clapping tuneage. They might just be ones to watch this year for some ‘breakout smash’ action. Hell, if gimps in hats (Orson) can do it, why not some peeps that really deserve it.

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The Spinto Band – Nice and Nicely Done