Field Music: Plumb

    Of the 2000s’ endless supply of precious Brit-rockers, it comes as no surprise that Field Music managed to maintain relevancy in the new decade, with its sound sustaining a certain maturity that draws confidently from pop icons of the past.  And Plumb, the fourth release from David and Peter Brewis, may be the duo’s most inspired work to date. 

    Instantly recognizable here is the ’70s power-pop influence, occasionally owing the likes of Paul McCartney and Electric Light Orchestra a royalty check or two. “Start the Day Off”’s robust major-chordmelodies are accompanied by a wistful string and woodwind backdrop, while the oversized chorus
    on “Sorry Again, Mate” wouldn’t feel out of place on a Badfinger record. The vocal lines on “A Preludeto Pilgrim Street” even manage to echo David Gilmour’s accented chants from Dark Side of the Moon — a testament, also, to the album’s immaculate production.  

    But there are a handful of throwaways that seem half-heartedly attached merely for their technical elegance (see dragging instrumentals “Ce Soir” and “So Long Then”).

    Fittingly, Field Music is most dynamic at their most conventional. The confident guitar grit of throbbing rockers “Just Like Everyone Else” and “(I Keep Thinking) About a New Thing” solidly anchors the album. Plumb’s singular gem lies in the straightforward groove of “A New Town,” where proggy guitar shuffle builds pleasant steam from start to finish. (6/10)

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