News & Insights 8 March 2013

State Magazine (14 January 2009)

ALBUM REVIEW: London, England by The Lightyears – 4/5
14 January 2009
Phil Udell, State Magazine, Ireland

When The Feeling made the graduation from playing covers in bars in the Alps to becoming the soft rock band of choice, it was three-piece The Lightyears who filled the gap. Now on their second album, the experience is long behind them but like their predecessors, the importance of making their own material as memorable as possible has hit home. The good news is that they’ve become more focused than in the past, less likely to sound like a bizarre compilation of different acts. They’re at their best making bright and breezy pop in the Jellyfish mould, tracks such as ‘Emily’ and ‘Sleepless’ floating along on a wave of harmony-filled choruses and rolling pianos. ‘This House Will Burn’, meanwhile, sounds like Babyshambles with less drugs and better manners.

The Lightyears still can’t help themselves though and feel the need to push off in different directions, fortunately not without some success. The clunky ‘She’s The One’ and ‘Filmstar’ aside, their attempts at a harder, more rock edge work well, especially the opening instrumental ‘Firefly’ and the short, Beatles-y ‘That Was Us’.

The grandeur of the album title never really translates itself into the album itself – and lyrics about Primrose Hill and the Tube can be a bit grating – but on ‘England’ they reach for epic and manage to pull it off. In a world of passing fashion, fake credibility and media hype, The Lightyears are able to stand out for all the right reasons, but that might just make their task all the harder.

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