This is a review of "Un" recorded by Chumbawamba. The review was written by Gavin Miller in 2004.
Anyone who thought, like me, that after the success of the none-more-irritating 'Tubthumping' that Chumbawamba just simply vanished, are now obviously wrong.
After the whole media storm that circulated around them circa 1997 after they attacked John Prescott at the Brit Awards died down, I don't think anyone cared when Chumbawamba failed to remain in the public eye. Especially after Britpop died, everyone kinda forgot about the quirky band from Leeds. Keeping on, the band still carried on releasing stuff and touring, and now they release this, their new album 'Un'.
With track titles like 'On eBay', 'Buy Nothing Day', 'Everything You Know Is Wrong' and 'When Fine Society Sits Down To Dine' it's easy to see they haven't lost their sense of anarchic humour. Which I like.
However, whilst the aforementioned songs aren't that bad, and in parts, this album is pretty good, but the one problem with it is that some guy keeps talking all over it. Now I'm all for spoken word bits in songs, I mean Belle & Sebastian used to do it quite a bit, and I love them, but this is ridiculous.
Songs like 'When Fine Society...' and 'Be With You' hint at some gorgeously produced pop songs, floating along on a sublime breeze of funky breakbeat-lite beats and catchy guitars. But there's that talking again. It wouldn't be so bad, but because they're from Leeds, it does tend to grate when a gruff northern accent starts talking.
In all, it isn't that bad, but then again, it isn't that great either. Fans of the band will obviously love it and buy it by the shed load, but to anyone familiar with their only real hit will probably avoid.