Japanese Voyeurs – Dumb

‘Be careful what you Google for!’, warn Japanese Voyeurs: either you’ll find links to dubious far-eastern ‘adult-orientated’ sites, or the myspace page of the band themselves – equally obscene is their raw first EP, the delightfully titled Sicking and Creaming. Lead track Dumb is something of a mission statement for the band and lays down their signatures, which are the ingredients to a grunge revival – chugging guitars, solid drumming and the vocals of a frontwomen that I can’t quite describe, part Gwen Stefani, part Cobain, perhaps. They’re bringing back the best bits with this cool, sleek EP. Seriously recommended ahead of their October 9th Brighton show.

It’s not without a little trace of irony that Editors seem to have made the transition from Joy Division-style monotonous brilliance to New Order-style monotonous brilliance, but Papillon, the triumphant first single from forthcoming third album In This Light and on This Evening, works so well. Strong rhythms and repetitive loops build up to a typically euphoric chorus that’s sure to electrify. Carried by frontman Tom’s vocals (which are much more than just a Curtis impression), the record is a signifier that Editors have more in their arsenal and are not ready to lay down and die yet.

You need to hear Stornoway this Autumn, and no doubt you will. Following on from the ecstatic first single Zorbing, comes the meandering Unfaithful. A shade more melancholy and reflective, but no less melodious, they’ve lost none of their ambition or Fleet Foxes-style grandiosity (though perhaps are a bit less ‘out of this world’ in style than their American folk counterparts). B-side You Don’t Know Anything showcases the band’s brilliant vocal talents, and the fact that they were undoubtedly students at one point or another (‘I been reading all weekend, But I don’t learn anything’). A great warming record for the Winter.

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