Release Date: Sep 19, 2011
Record label: Cooking Vinyl
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock, Punk-Pop
We have neither, but they've got a bit to say on the subject... A topical album of sorts, the third offering from this longstanding trio abounds with references to, well, money and celebrity (or rather the most egregious / unjust / empty elements thereof). Thus, the tone is set for The Subways’ brilliantly anarchic punk-pop vignettes; each is a big musical middle finger that sticks it to financial greed, the mediocre mainstream and the fame fetishists.
Review Summary: When music should be listened to without a pen or keyboard in sight.Barring writers block, one of the most frustrating aspects of reviewing music is when the writer is fully aware that the words they have written do not necessarily match up with the album rating that is most likely to be the first port of call for a reader. As much as objectivity is required, there are times when an album's shortcomings can be overlooked for the good of the overall product. This is when music should be listened to without a pen or keyboard in sight...
The Subways lay it all out with the title of their third album, Money and Celebrity. It’s a concept record of sorts, with the trio bashing out fizzy punk-poppers about celebrities, money, and parties, all the ingredients leading to a “Popdeath.” Topically, these tabloid tunes are very new millennium indeed, but musically the group is stuck in the ‘90s, something that producer Stephen Street has a field day with, underlining every passing resemblance to Blur, Ash, or These Animal Men. Street gives Money and Celebrity color and coaxes enough energy out of the Subways to keep the album moving.
There’s no sound more frustrating than that of a band you once felt all warm and tingly about stalling in second gear. Not only does this scribe have to put up with the relative disappointment of The Subways’ mediocre third album Money And Celebrity, I’m publicly tasked with sticking the knife into what is probably their last big career gambit. What a ballache! To briefly explain, The Subways are a band that chimed well with my adolescent desires to taste guitar-lead euphoria.
“[i]It’s a party/And don’t you know it don’t get much better![/i]” (‘[b]It’s a Party[/b]’). No-one’s saying [a]The Subways[/a] haven’t pioneered a new paradigm for the punk-rock genre, but after two albums treading water in the tricky oceans of landfill indie, the tides are turning. Single ‘[b]We Don’t Need Money To Have A Good Time[/b]’, which should – in a dearth of cheap, blistering, recession-ready pop-rants – be absolutely zeitgeist-bothering is just more 10-a-penny tedium from Welwyn Garden City’s rock’n’roll quacks.