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The Sound - From The Lions Mouth review (Record Mirror 21-10-1981)

date: Oct 21, 1981

(Korova KODE 5) **** SOUND ROAR

Against a backcloth of mindless escapism and redundant revivals The SOUND brave another year. Twelve months ago they steamed in with a remarkable debut that knocked spots off those by fellow newcomers like U2. the Comsats and the Bunnymen. Since then all the aforementioned have put out second albums and once again The SOUND lead the field. Unheralded, unhyped, but quietly beavering away with an almost devout devotion. In fact the religious aspect is not to be taken lightly. From the quasi-biblicat Daniel-ln-The-Lions'-Den sleeve to the allowed tone of the lyrics, this is a most serious LP - singer-songwriter ADRIAN BORLAND's personal confessional with songs of doubt and redemption, questioning, judgement. atonement and so on. The opening 'WINNING' set the scene for the whole record, MAX MAYER's exquisitely sad keyboard intro gives way to words like "I was going to drown/ then I started swimming, I was going down/ then I started winning" and from then on the imagery is relentless. BORLAND seems obsessed with man's struggle against the world and drops one moral platitude after another. Human weakness, growing away from the light, control against the forces of evil etc etc are confronted at every chord change, the backing tracks oozing with sympathetic angst skilled yet simple, mournful but melodious. With a mellotron sound redolent of early King Crimson, several of the songs are far too waffly and indulgent but nonetheless maintain the overall theme of doubt and despondency whilst simultaneously trying to get to grips with the problem. Since The Cure remain relative failures. The SOUND seem set to take up where Joy Division left off and become the saviors of the the adolescent grim brigade. Obviously there's a good deal of naïvety surrounding a set like this but The SOUND have put their cards squarely on the table and come up with a well-integrated, coherent package. In fact you could almost call it a concept album which in view of their unfashionable disposition is perhaps not so ironic after all. 'FROM THE LION's MOUTH' is no less than its title suggests and however different the band sound another year from now, it usefully documents the ideas and preoccupations of one of the most interesting young bands around today.

Mike Nicholls - (Record Mirror 21-10-1981)

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