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Love Jungle Album Review

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Love Jungle brought out this cheeky album and a decent 12” EP with a lot of other stuff unreleased, which was a shame as they had real potential during the late 80’s indie whirlpool of colliding opposites. Sadly the labels were all looking for dance crossover bands at the time and something like this curiously gritty pop quartet missed out. They’d come out of the excellent Fear Of Darkness where Neil Darby was the guitar lynchpin and Angela had been an interesting addition on backing vocals, and that sense of ebullient melodic control continued here.


‘Wasn’t There Something’ gets whisked initially by frisky darting guitar, then the leisurely grand vocals ascend the sturdy stairs of a confident chorus. A lithe thing it’s all glittery and soft when some more dive-bombing bass and drums would have added real dynamics, but it’s very Popinjays! (This is always A Good Thing.) ‘Am I Good Enough’ is much snappier and with a decent production could have been a hit, but viewed retrospectively it’s a bit weird. Great ideas, sweet song, but the harder element is clearly negated by the winsome elements. ‘Cast Adrift’ bubbles with MTV-friendly guitar nibbles and a sliding gliding feel while creamy vocals smother the surface. Once again you realise this could have been even better because it lingers long, but seems almost too busy.

‘Blue Skies’ has the starkness the earlier songs lack and it jars and jostles brilliantly. The vocals are meaner, with the same wafting backing, but the tougher, blunter approach suits them well. ‘That’s The Way’ is easy going and efficient indie pop with a gently glazed chorus again, which they seemed to churn out so easily. Ditto the brightly swaying ‘Between The Poles’ which would have benefited from more shadow, as they do drift by rather absent-mindedly. Being weirder, stiller and pained ‘I Really Don’t Care’ is immediately intriguing, although the aerated nature of Angela’s vocals are sometimes a little too grating. More sensibly grounded, she bustles through ‘This Covenant’ which seems almost hesitant about allowing the guitar to stamp its identity on the son g, which it’s crying out for.

They were much tougher live, and while this polite selection remains charming it also shows how trying to appeal to major label tastes can leave a band in quasi-limbo.

Taken from

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