Cathy Davey + Two Door Cinema Club

With predictable unpredictability, this year’s Choice Music Prize went to Two Door Cinema Club. Their Tourist History is exactly the sort of thing you’d expect from a trio a respectable teenagers. One of them has even insisted on growing a beard. That’s how young they are.

Basically, they’re Hot Chip lite. Which is fine, but it does mean that they are ominously radio friendly. Hopefully I’m wrong, and they will still be around in five years’ time. But a certain part of their anatomy needs to drop if they’re to inject any spunk into those tunes they so effortlessly produce. There needs to be a bit more indie in their tronica and a lot less pop if they’re to avoid ending up as this year’s D:Ream.

The best album of those nominated was comfortably Cathy Davey’s The Nameless. It’s only her third album, but there’s a sense of substance to it that only time can give you. Extraordinarily confident melodically, you nevertheless have the occasional suspicion that any moment now, it’s about to slip into tweeness, which isn’t helped by the knowledge that she’s currently seeing Neil Hannon (if you know of a more gratingly fey album than The Duckworth Lewis Method, kindly keep it to yourself.)

Happily though, it glides instead into the terrain originally fashioned by Jacques Brel and Scott Walker and currently occupied by Pink Martini, and what might have been merely a collection of brilliant songs is given a timeless sense of permanence. The Touch especially evokes the seedy decadence of an Amsterdam brothel in the 1970s, where Serge Gainsbourg is being serviced by a nymphette who looks like she might be at school with his daughter.

Made by and for grown-ups, and unlike any of the other nominees, The Nameless will still be listened to in at least five years’ time. And ultimately, it’s time not prizes that we’re judged by.

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  1. You’ve craptued this perfectly. Thanks for taking the time!

    • Glad to have been of some service. And I STILL find myself dipping in and out of that Cathy Davey album. Definitely a keeper.

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