Paperface’s Out of Time: Elliott Smith-like?

14th February 2016

Title: Out of Time

Label: Daydream

Despite the string background and the odd Beach Boys inflected harmonic vocal delivery touch in the first track, Amsterdam, there is a sense of simplicity and straightforward songwriting from the band. There is also a sense of intimacy and cosy inclusiveness in the presentation. Lyric-heavy songs are foremost that sit underneath a vocal style that triggers a host of thoughts and words from this reviewer. Listening to this album I consider: the state of being working class, the ordinary man, flat cap, travel to work on a bus, fish and chips for tea, wide eyed, slightly naive, day dreaming out of the window at the desk in the office.

This band play and perform well within themselves. There’s no great effort in their performance. They smoothly trundle down the road with the sunlight twinkling upon them from in amongst the bushes and trees. Hence, the album is a relaxing one and one that reminds me a touch of Elliott Smith but without the tragic anguish. Neil Hannon perhaps? Maybe I should look a little bit more towards a group like Travis? But without the Coldplay associations. A sort of indie version of Gilbert O’Sullivan, maybe? Paperface are in there…somewhere.

As for the vinyl cut itself? It’s surprising good. The pressing is pretty clean, open and airy with no obvious errors while the cut is a quiet one. I was able to push the gain to extract as much detail as possible without any risk of brightness, upper mid bloom or stodgy bass. So a big thumbs up in terms of audiophile quality.

All in all, a wholly attractive production from a band who don’t try in terms of putting their heart and soul into their performance. But the lack of effort is both relaxing and quite endearing.

Listening to Paperface is a bit like chatting to a friend over a coffee in a favourite tea room.