It must be hard finding work as a sailor in Derby, there aren’t that many places further from the sea in England and despite hailing from such a landlocked location, The Sons imagery has a very maritime feel. From the title of their new album, Heading Into Land, to the video of the albums first release, Death, Love, Money, they seem taken with the idea of a life on the ocean waves. Though don’t expect that theme to spill into their music, this is no cliched collection of piratanical plagiarism or buccaneering balderdash. The one nautical tune, the title track and album swan song is deliberately obtuse with the themes at hand. No, what you have here is something far more worthy.
A collection of songs about the everyday hardships, hopes, dashed dreams and kitchen sink drama in the style of some of the quirky greats of underground pop. The same lack of adherence to fashion can be found here that you would find with Squeeze and Crowded House and that’s probably why their songs have lasted so long. And so should these.
Not everything has to push genre boundaries, cater to hipster cool or need to storm the cultural and social barricades. Sometimes it is enough to write well-meaning, sensitive songs, original enough to have their own identity, recognisable enough in style to be immediately accessible.
And if Flash and Bang is tugging at the shirt tails of Elvis Costello, songs such as We See Stars and Hard Life just seems to exist in there own gentle and genteel world. The band are going to appeal to a slightly older audience, one that has lived a bit, undergone a few of the trials and tribulations encountered in these songs. But that’s fine, those sleeve tattooed chaps with their overly complex hair, Hoxton lumberjack chic and penchant for drinking out of jam jars have had it their own way for too long in my opinion. Break out the sensible shoes it’s time for a swift half.