Cherubs

Uncovered by Heartbeat

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The Cherubs continue the Anglophile new wave revivalism of bands like the Killers, Interpol, and their followers, with the mild change-up that they're actually based in London instead of Brooklyn. (Although actually four of the band's five members are Norwegian émigrés.) Their debut album, Uncovered by Heartbeat, features the same sort of slight revisionism and updating of U.K. post-punk sounds as those better-known groups, although songs like the hard-charging "Adult Video/Chinese Food" and the slightly hysterical thrum of "Eyes Only," as well as singer Staale Bruland's generally intense delivery, make it sound like earlier and noisier bands like Magazine, Public Image Ltd., and the Adverts are their touchstones rather than Joy Division's more tightly controlled gloom. This does make Uncovered by Heartbeat considerably fresher sounding than the umpteenth rehashing of Unknown Pleasures, but the fact that there are few elements of these songs that can't be directly traced to earlier, better records means that the Cherubs fall victim to the same revivalist mindset. (As part of a growing trend similar to the concept of "CD-only bonus tracks" in the late '80s, the digital download version of Uncovered by Heartbeat adds seven songs, including a scrappy demo of the single "Hey Bunny," to the 11 songs found on the CD.)

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