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8/10

THE XCERTS - ‘IN THE COLD WIND WE SMILE’

Mike Haydock
Mike Haydock 1 April 2009 at 16.00

THE XCERTS - ‘IN THE COLD WIND WE SMILE’ Cover

This is what Britain does better than anywhere else in the world: intelligent pop music with an injection of aggression and downright bitterness.

This is what Britain does better than anywhere else in the world: intelligent pop music with an injection of aggression and downright bitterness. We’re talking Idlewild, we’re talking Biffy. Did we say Britain? Perhaps it’s a Scottish thing - The Xcerts are mostly from Aberdeen, after all. And this debut is inch-perfect, merging heartstring-tugging delicacy with buoyant distortion. It steers clear of emo tripe territory by focusing on rocking out, not whining, and as the songs veer through smart tone and rhythm changes, Murray Macleod’s vocal remains resolute and lyrical, picking out melodies you’ll be singing back to yourself for weeks. If you’re searching for pop with balls but no bullshit, look no further.

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