Well Manered Thieves – Divide The Light
If the Marxist concept that ‘property is theft’ is anything to go by, then these Well Mannered Thieves are rolling in real estate.
Opening track ‘Wink Wink Smile’ starts off sounding thin and lacking, but it’s all a ruse, a classic ‘false start’ sounding distant and washed out before the song kicks in with a cracking bass riff and guitars that drip with funk style. We’re almost immediately treated to a catchy chorus with glorious harmonies, telling us we’ve wandered into some confident songwriting territory. ‘Burn My Luck’ opens in a way that leans towards ‘Elevation’ era U2 with a bell like tone clanging its way through the mix, but it’s the female BVs that lift the track into the stratosphere, perfectly matching and contrasting with the lead to create textures that run through the music like the veins in a good blue cheese. ‘I Don’t Care’ bears all the influences of Sting and the Police packaged in a modern funk rock style, while ‘Red Dresses’ moves in a more delicate, piano led direction, starting off stripped back and gradually building into a smouldering tower of power that retains the attention from start to finish. While the closing tracks ‘Too Damn Easily’ and ‘Twisted Letters’ feel less remarkable, that’s not to say that they don’t stand up as worthy additions to an engaging collection of songs. With Divide The Light, Well Mannered Thieves have shown themselves to be one to watch in terms of fresh, original music.