SMITH STREET BAND, THE: More Scared of You Than You Are of Me: LP/CD

I’d seen the name of this band all over the place in recent years but until now I had never actually heard these Aussies—apparently loved by vast swathes of people—and with a healthy back catalogue. Such widespread adoration sometimes puts me on the back foot; ready to find fault where none exists, but these men from down under were having none of that. No, they sucked me right in on the first play, sounding like an Antipodean cross between Great Cynics, Bangers, and Titus Andronicus. I immediately found myself having warm, fuzzy feelings towards The Smith Street Band and acknowledging that I’d been a fool not to check it out before. This is indie, rock, and pop all rolled into one, with Wil Wagner’s lyrics telling tales that draw you in like a good book. A point of note that may interest people is that the equally well-loved Jeff Rosenstock played on and produced the album. –Rich Cocksedge (Specialist Subject, [email protected], specialistsubjectrecords.com / SideOneDummy, sideondummy.com / Uncle-M, [email protected], uncle-m.com / Pool House, [email protected], poolhouserecords.com.au)