Jagged and unkempt and totally unashamed, Young Knives create the sort of oddly poetic music that derives much of its appeal from the adroit lyricism of vocalist Henry Dartnall. Sometimes shunning tunefulness and melody, though rarely losing the observational edge that seems to undercut most of ‘Sick Octave’, the Leicestershire trio that refuse to quit have produced a record of small things; models of Obi-Wan Kenobi, girls called Maureen and pennies.

Specificity seems to be all important, and whilst this makes for deliciously witty music (see ‘Marble Maze’), it can be alienating at times in its pure disregard for any sort of universality. There are tracks such as ‘We Could Be Blood’ and ‘Maureen’ that occupy wholly earnest and wholly ironic spaces respectively, and these work well as single offerings, but ‘Sick Octave’ as a whole is often too jagged (and too unkempt) for its own good.


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