This is a review of "We Borrow Industry" recorded by Market Fiction. The review was written by Henry Jones in 2009.
It's a CDR. It's a high street bought CDR in a plastic wallet with a computer printed piece of artwork on cheap paper. I'm a little wary, to say the very least, but in the true spirit of DIY and Rock and Roll, I press play, close my eyes and listen.
A harsh, interesting guitar tone jumps out of the speakers and catches me straight away. Drums, bass, more guitars and vocals join the intro track, 'Soldiers.' The biggest thing you notice is the vocals, Kate Glen's voice is wonderfully docile and sweet, which highlights the edge of the band behind her. The other lead vocalist, Lee McRae, has one of the strangest voices I've ever heard. Its like the love child of Chris Martin and Morrissey with immensely effective musicality, and very interesting inflections.
Track two is what I would assume to be the 'single' of the five track EP. It's called 'Cherry Bones,' and it works really well. Just edgy enough, just poppy enough, just right, with an absolutely wicked instrumental section at the end that is indulgent only as far as the listener is concerned.
They bring the feel down a little with the third track, and we hear Kate's voice alone for a whole verse, for the first time. The drums and guitar criss-crossing is interesting, and the second verse, with its polyphonic vocal lines that come together for the second half of each line is a really cool trick. They are showing off and I am loving it. And naturally, they kick it after two and a half minutes just to remind you that they can!
'Passport to Pimlico' is the fourth song and the intro is drums bass and guitar. This is the first time they haven't opened with a solo guitar intro, which is later joined by the band. It's rather refreshing in context. The areas of light and shade in this song are nice, and there's a sense of building towards the charismatic and energy-filled "So Stop!" shout of the chorus, and the truly sublime comedown into the verse.
Finally, we are treated to a bonus track which is not listed on the artwork. Glockenspiel and acoustic guitar, and violin! Even Lee's voice sounds different in the way it has been treated. It's a very nice song, which builds and doesn't hint at Coldplay in the way you might think.
Overall, the record works. Market Fiction are a roller-coaster ride of Garage Brit Pop with all the charm and charisma of an awards ceremony. The voices and songs this band produce are wonderfully complex with multiple layers and hidden depths. Any criticisms? Maybe some overuse of the pushed crotchet rhythm, and the presentation of the EP itself, but the musicality of this band is of a very high standard. As far as I'm concerned, they have raised the bar for the Indie bands of Leeds, no more can you get away with crappy songs cranked up loud so no one will notice the flaws. I'm a fan.