|Oh blimey, it looks like my reputation is preceding me. Having critically mauled a succession of artists from Southampton on these very pages, Birdpen have wisely omitted any mention of their hometown on the sleeve of this three-track demo. Well, almost any mention. Sorry lads, I’m a dialling code geek and I know where 02380 is.
The thing with bands from Southampton is that they never seem to be completely awful; just awful enough in parts to warrant my disdain. Thus, the lead track Fake Kid is five and a half minutes of plodding synth-led boredom that seems to wish it was from Manchester, only to end up as close as the rest of Malcolm Glazer’s new fan base.
In fairness, the other two tracks fair slightly better. A Round Of Applause For A Great Disaster has touches of The Beta Band to it and is marginally less numbing, whilst Huron borders on the frankly pleasant, thanks to a hefty dose of Grandaddy at their most melancholic. I still don’t reckon I’d be safe going near Hampshire for a while though.