MOVIETONE Day And Night (Domino)

"Day And Night" is the second album by this Bristol quartet, following their eponymous debut released in 1995 and support slots with Tortoise and Sonic Youth last year. The press release claims that "any musical comparisons are redundant", so here we go: to these ears Movietone seem to be fusing the streamlined jazzy sensibilities of the likes of Tortoise and Aerial M with the windswept Nick Drakeian folk leanings of labelmates (and, I think, fellow Bristolians) Flying Saucer Attack. Not a disinteresting combination, admittedly, but combined with Kate Wright’s colourful-as-a-goth’s-facepaint vocals and their penchant for, erm, meaningful lyrics (lines like "This material becomes an extension of our skin/It’s just words and paper smiles that mean nothing") suggest that Movietone’s live appearances are probably fairly low on the "Hello London, are you ready to rock?"-ometer. About as ascetic as the Tindersticks at their least happy-go-lucky, admirable though "Day And Night"’s purity of execution may be, I suspect that few listeners will want to be flogged quite this hard.