The Zutons

Who Killed...... The Zutons

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Since the Zutons share a label (Deltasonic), producer (Ian Broudie), hometown (Liverpool), and pool of influences with the Coral, you'd think it's probably a safe bet that they sound an awful lot like the Coral. Well, you'd be right -- in fact, the bands sound so eerily similar, from their Love/Animals-influenced ruckus down to their Scouse accents that, were it not for the Zutons' solid reputation as a live act, there'd be serious questions as to whether this was just the Coral under a secret moniker, à la XTC's the Dukes of Stratosphear. Still, Who Killed. . . the Zutons was nominated for a Mercury Prize for Album of the Year, so they must have something, and they do. From rave-ups like "You Will You Won't" and "Pressure Point" down to the album's many, gentle folk moments, they cover quite a bit of ground. It's all very steeped in '60s garage rock, very much "dad rock" if you will, though it's injected with just enough fun that it doesn't sound like an entirely retro exercise. The best moments come when the band expands their sonic palette -- the bouncy, horn-spiked "Remember Me" is the very definition of classic Merseybeat, and one of the reasons to revisit Who Killed. . . the Zutons again and again. Still, this sounds like a lost Coral album down to every last detail, which means that it seems silly to venture here unless you've at least bought one Coral album already.

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