CD Reviews




It was with some suspicion that I scanned through the track list on the back of the Republica album as I merrily bounded back from my local CD emporium. Surely, thought I, the fact that the undeniably storming single, 'Ready to Go', was the first and last track on the album was just another way of saying "We only have One Good Song". Happily, I was wrong.

Okay, yes, 'Ready to Go' is undoubtedly the stand-out track on the album, but the other tracks are far from mere padding. Also worthy of note is the fact the album seems to get better as it goes on, with the last few tracks being absolute stormers, whilst tracks two and three, 'Bloke' and 'Bitch' (!) are just 'quite good'.

Republica have a very definite sound to them. If a description exists it would have to be 'techno-rock'. Saffron, bless her, has one of those strong London accents that makes you wonder if she's putting it on for artistic emphasis, but whatever... it works well. The album isn't limited to up-tempo dancy loudness as you might expect from what you've heard on the airwaves so far. 'Picture Me', which comes right in the middle of the album, is a jangly, moody little number with some truly wonderful bleepy type noises toward the end.

Which brings me on to production. This album has been superbly produced - okay, we have plenty to work with in this electronic genre, but every trick is there without being overdone. The huge mid-range sweeps, tight drums with completely implausible EQ, and guitars compressed almost into obscurity, all blend together perfectly.

If you liked the first two Republica singles and you want more of the same, then this album will not dissappoint. But don't expect anything vastly different. Or better. It's consistent. And personally, I love it. (MF)


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