Farrah - Cut Out And Keep

Beyond doubt Farrah prove they can produce shiny, chart-friendly pop music, but beneath the gloss lurks a band that you feel could create something a lot more imaginative.

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Released 6 Aug 2007 | Lojinx | By Richard Stokoe | Rating: 2-5
Farrah - Cut Out And Keep

It might seem as though it's been raining consistently for the last six months but the sun is shining all across this album. There are nothing but clear skies as the band launch into an onslaught of cheery Rembrandts meets Fountains of Wayne powerpop. The opening four songs are relentlessly upbeat, with lead track 'Dumb Dumb Ditty', an ironic parody of a thousand saccharine teen-punk singles, proving particularly annoying apart from the peculiarly enjoyable prog rock synth solo toward the end. 'Do You Ever Think Of Me' continues the jump-along vibe, the cursory tale of one night stands 'Awkward Situation' tempers the mood all too briefly with sombre atmospherics, and then it's back on the pogo stick for 'No Reason Why'.

The first signs of rain appear when the band slow things down for the Ralph McTell navel-gaze of 'As Soon As I Get Over You' and nostalgia-fest 'School Reunion'. Both are about as melancholy as it gets for Farrah, but they are songs that prove the band has a talent for writing a chorus you can sing along with in an instant. From hereon in the pace only reverts to type for the glam-tinged 'The Only Way', a 'Jessie's Girl' sound-alike with another startling synth break. Either side of this the band indicate that they have a more cultured side. 'Things We Shouldn't Say' is an acoustic shuffle that recalls The Bluetones' mellower moments and, whilst still undeniably catchy, shows a good deal more subtlety than we were given reason to believe they were capable of. 'No One Stays Together' is another gentle acoustic number reminiscent of Blur's 'Bad Head', while the album closes with the piano-led ballad 'Removal Man' - virtually comatose in comparison to the album's opening minutes.

'Cut Out And Keep' will compete with the output of the likes of Orson and Captain for a share of a mainstream market aimed at the young and upwardly mobile. Beyond doubt Farrah prove they can produce shiny, chart-friendly pop music, but beneath the gloss lurks a band that you feel could create something a lot more imaginative and far less disposable. This is sunshine pop for a rain-soaked summer, but the question is - come the autumn will anyone still be listening?