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Bluebottle Kiss | Revenge Is Slow (Laughing Outlaw)
There are bands who are derivitive - there always will be those kinds; I mean, how many Coldplay, Travis, Radiohead-alikes are there out there? Hundreds. I know, because I've heard a lot of 'em and it does get tedious. The same goes for the dreaded alt.country tag; does 'alt.country' mean that the group are so described because they embellish their music with a few curleques of pedal steel? If that's the case, then Australia's Bluebottle Kiss - a big deal Down Under, apparently - are an alt.country group, simply by dint of the track Ounce Of Your Cruelty, a delicate little flower in a forest of redwoods. Indeed, 'Revenge Is Slow''s second track is a bit of a puzzle for it doesn't particularly sit with the rest of the tracks on offer; a lot of the stuff here has more shades of grey than light, probably deliberately so, too. Prussian Blue is a dark, atmospheric ballad; Let The Termites Each Our Riches (great title, mind) is almost schizophrenic while Hello Stranger, with its plodding rhythmn, is a kind of oddball waltz. Bluebottle Kiss's music is almost like Crowded House's bigger, badder brother; the one who doesn't have the finesse and style of his kid brother. Or the tunes, either. 'Revenge Is Slow' is, in truth, rather hard going in places. It often fails to get out of second gear. Mid-term report? Could do better. Or, in other words, keep it simple lads and don't try so hard to impress all the other kids in the playground.
CWAS #13 - Autumn 2003