New Stars of the North; Steeped in 20 Years of Mancunian Rock Music History, Doves' Latest Album Is One of the Finest You Will Hear This Year
Pattenden, Mike, The Mail on Sunday (London, England)
Byline: MIKE PATTENDEN
Oon the opening track of their new album The Last Broadcast the Doves sing: 'Here comes something wonderful.' Rather than the usual misplaced rock star hubris, their words ring true, becuase this Manchester trio have produced one of the great British rock records of 2002.
Andy Williams, the band's drummer and vocalist, has described The Last Broadcast as 'northern soul meets New Order meets White Stripes'. He's two-thirds right - the album takes the spirit and joy of northern soul and welds it to the emotive impact of New Order at their peak.
The result is a grandiose rock album that's steeped in 20 years of Mancunian music history, yet also has the scope, conviction and ambition to match Radiohead's The Bends or Echo and the Bunnymen's Ocean Rain. The album's lead single, There Goes the Fear, takes you through a lifetime's emotions in seven minutes, firmly putting Oasis's latest effort, The Hindu Times, released the same day, in the shadows.
Its breadth and imagination are matched across the album's 12 tracks, from the gospel rock of Satellites to the hushed acoustic M62 Song and the twinkling lullaby of The Sulphur Man. Not a bad range for a band who used to make dance records.
Rock acts have been putting aside their guitars in favour of drum machines and samplers for more than a decade now - Daft Punk and Air both began playing in traditional bass-guitar-drums bands - but Doves, like the contrary Lancastrians they are, opted to go the other way.
The trio -?brothers Andy and Jez Willliams and Jimi Goodwin - met when they were 15 and grew up as regulars at Manchester's legendary Hacienda club. …