Saturday, 21 February 2015

The Race For Space

The new Public Service Broadcasting album.

A lovely dual sleeve (which way round will I have it?) and on heavyweight clear vinyl. It also includes a 12" booklet with text that provides a timeline and narrative for the music and ensures that PSB continue with their commitment to Inform, Educate and Entertain.
My Dad used to disapprove of me listening to so much music as a teenager - he felt that there were more highbrow ways of me spending my leisure time and said to me "you'll never learn anything from listening to music". He was wrong, and at the time I used OMD as a counter argument to his assertion (Joan of Arc, Enola Gay, Nikola Tesla, Genetic Engineering and Stanlow Oil Refinery are some of the things they introduced me to). Maybe I should send him a copy of this album...

As for the music, it's much more of a listening album and arguably holds together better than their debut (no doubt helped by the concept), but still very much what you'd expect and want for a PSB album. There's plenty of nice touches too - the choral work, the use of different drum kits for each nation and, best of all, their statement of intent in the liner notes:

" This record has been mastered quieter than most modern albums in order to preserve its dynamics. PSB do not like the loudness wars. Listening to it may therefore require judicious use of the volume knob."

The "American" front cover...
...and the "Soviet" front cover.