Album review: LIFE - Popular Music

Anyone complaining about a lack of new political music could do far worse than listen to Hull band LIFE, whose long-awaited debut album could hardly have fallen at a more appropriate time.

LIFE - Popular Music (Afghan Moon).
LIFE - Popular Music (Afghan Moon).

The band, whose brand of modern punk contains dashes of Britpop legends Suede and Pulp, have toured with Slaves, been heralded by Radio 6 Music's Steve Lamacq and headline a stage at Radio One's Big Weekend tomorrow.

In the words of frontman Mez Sanders-Green, Popular Music "sounds like panic and anxiety," and despite totalling just 27 minutes, its 11 tracks take more than their share of stabs at current affairs.

At a time when young people's futures are being decided by older generations who'll never face the consequences, In Your Hands is a powerful call to arms, and a reminder that no matters can be solved without participation.

Euromillions, meanwhile, spreads its wings elsewhere, with lyrics such as "you have the right to bear arms if you've got the right coloured arms - on the right side of the wall" coming as thinly-veiled references to goings-on across The Pond.

Perhaps the finest moments, though are those which best capture the verve and energy of their live performances.

Go Go Go, Popular Music and Ba Ba Ba, for instance, back frantic Mark E. Smith-like vocals with a razor-sharp guitar attack, and could well see LIFE make an impact once the festival season kicks into gear. 8/10