Release Date: Feb 4, 2013
Record label: V2
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock
I first happened upon the Courteeners back in 2008 thanks to a tip from the incomparable Steven Patrick Morrissey, which was really all I needed at the time to become interested in them. When Morrissey tells me to do something, whether it is listening to a new band or jumping off a bridge, I typically just do what he says and don’t ask too many questions. I draw the line at vegetarianism however, not even Morrissey can make me forego pork belly and Icelandic lobster.
Courteeners frontman Liam Fray doesn’t so much write albums as submit application letters every other year to the exclusive club of musical greatness. The man’s ambition is unrelenting. It’s not ambition that manifests itself via a big gob, and you could never imagine him saying “Dylan’s eating the chips while I’m sliding the champagne bottle up my arse” or whatever it was Razorlight’s Johnny Borrell said back in 2004.
Anna continues the polished, anthemic vein of the Courteeners' second album, Falcon, but brings back some of the swagger that was missing from those songs. The album opens strong, with "Are You in Love with a Notion?" and "Lose Control" displaying plenty of energy and '80s new wave sheen. Best of all is the rolling groove of "Van Der Graaff," which with its tough verses and vulnerable choruses, is the best balance of where the Courteeners have been and where they want to go that the band has yet managed.
Anna sees Rochdale quartet Courteeners make a return after the best part of three years away. Whilst their previous outing, Falcon, ticked all the right arena filled anthem boxes, the difficult third album gives a sense of a band trying to change that dynamic whilst landing in exactly the same postcode. Not that that’s an entirely bad thing. Doubters were swift to write off Courteeners’ risky decision to work with electronic producer Joe Cross, famous for his most recent collaboration with Hurts.
The four-piece openly embraces lad rock, but do at least challenge its mandate. Natalie Hardwick 2013 Almost three years have elapsed since this Rochdale quartet released their second album, Falcon. A lot has happened in the indie world in that time, and something pretty peculiar has happened to The Courteeners as a result. It’s like someone sent the band a memo saying that the 80s, synths and not being a lad are in.