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Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Record Review - The Cathode Ray


The Cathode Ray

Stereogram CD

Despite trends coming and going, Scotland has always maintained a strong tradition of songwriting in its purest form. Although singer-guitarist Jeremy Thomas and former Josef K front man Paul Haig originally wanted to fuse late ’70s New York and Manchester influences, their own character soon emerged, taking in a much broader spectrum after the latter left to concentrate on his solo career. After Haig was replaced by former Scars/Mike Scott guitarist Steve Fraser (who also joins ex-Bluebells/TV21 bassist Neil Baldwin and drummer David Mack), Thomas wrote more songs and the group recorded its debut album.

The set is a beguiling mixture of Postcard-style pop (‘Patience Is A Virtue’), Joy Division-Magazine drama-cruise (‘Get A Way’), subtle post-punk dissonance-meets-Magazine (‘Get A Way’), Bowie balladeering (‘The Race’) and Velvets-style rhythm guitar underpinning gems like first single, ‘Around’.

Absolute quality – this deserves some attention.

Kris Needs

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