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Album Review

Bricolage sound a whole lot like Orange Juice. You just can't escape it. It's in the arch lilt of the vocals, the angular jangle of the guitars, the skipping dance-punk beats, and the clever wordplay of the lyrics. A song like "Footsteps" could be slotted into a collection of Postcard-era OJ and very few people would bat an eye. Why, then, does this blatant idolatry not completely wreck — or even harm — the band's self-titled debut, especially when the songs that don't sound like OJ end up aping fellow post-punk heroes Vic Godard and the Subway Sect? Two important things save the day for Bricolage. The first and most vital is the songwriting. Simply put, the band has whipped up a cracking batch of tunes here, "Footsteps" being the top of the pops but "Turn U Over," "Flowers of Deceit," and "The Waltzers" coming in dead close. They have huge hooks and singalong choruses, and sound like the kind of songs most bands would kill to write just one of in their lifetimes. Bricolage have an album full of them. Second, they add a few twists to the Chic-meets-Velvet Underground formula that Edwyn Collins and James Kirk set in place for OJ, whether it's the Motown backbeat of "Looting Takes the Waiting Out of Wanting," the Spector-meets-Strokes sound of "A Terrible Souvenir," or the warm, Beach Boys-style backing vocals that pop up now and then. And something else that makes the album worth owning and the band worth following is the simple fact that Orange Juice were a great band who came and went too fast, so borrowing their sound is much more forgivable than a band copping from a mega-band like the Beatles or Oasis. They will need to move on eventually, but for now Bricolage are just fine doing what they are doing, and their debut delivers on the promise of their early singles and then some. Edwyn (and Vic and James) should be proud.


Formed: 2005 in Glasgow, Scotland

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

Glasgow post-punk revivalists Bricolage formed in 2005 and began playing pop music heavily influenced by the Postcard sound, particularly that of Orange Juice, and the razor-sharp feel of Vic Godard & the Subway Sect. Comprised of Graham Wann and Wallace Meek on guitar and vocals, Darren Cameron on bass, keys, and vocals, and Colin Kearney on drums, the band released its first single, "Footsteps," for Scottish label Creeping Bent in the summer of 2006. Around this time, Kearney began playing in the...
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Bricolage, Bricolage
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