When Michael Azerrad googled himself last year, he might not have been expecting to find that some relatively unknown indie outfit from London’s south-western suburbia were singing a chorus of “I’ll kill today/I’ll kill you, Azerrad” to ever- growing crowds. Although ‘I Am Azerrad’ is included on Tubelord’s debut album, the rest of the record is thankfully short of death threats, and instead offers punchy jabs and deft hooks in abundance. The Kingston trio are the poppiest among the post-punk-math-class of ’09 (Pennines, Blakfish et al), but that doesn’t mean that they endorse beats in 4/4 or obvious, spotlight-grabbing choruses. The vocals might have been put on a pedestal among the overall mix, but the band’s trademark stop/start-breakdowns and misleading crescendos prevents ‘Our First American Friends’ from being polished or predictable.

By Matthias Scherer

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