This month, wading through the quagmire of tripe that currently floods the ‘alternative’ music scene, comes the second and long awaited album from Leeds power-poppers, Eureka Machines. Their second full length release, entitled ‘Champion the Underdog’ aims to do just that – pushing the quartet along the yellow brick road that eventually leads to success, money and eternal happiness. They’ve come a long way; though just four years young, the band hark back to the incredibly catchy era of nineties British rock with this release. Liberal amounts of The Wildhearts, Terrorvision and Manic Street Preachers make up this eclectic mixture of aural pleasure.
‘Being Good Is Okay, But Being Better’s Better’ – their debut – engaged in dramatic vocal harmonies and catchy punk hooks, giving it a generally feel good atmosphere. While both these are present in this release, there is something more sincere to be found in ‘Champion the Underdog’.
If there is a more melancholic tone to the whole thing, it certainly doesn’t make this album any less engaging or enjoyable. The sharp tongue of singer and lyricist Chris adds a witty edge to what is already an excellent example of songsmithery (see ‘Godot’s Arrived’ and ‘Professional Crastinator’). Dropping a reference to John Lennon or The Ramones may seem like a reasonable call (the band does so in the title track), but their reference to Fred Didnah is pure lyrical genius. While there are the immediate stand out tracks, ‘Champion the Underdog’ and ‘These Are The People Who Live In My House’, there are others like ‘Professional Crastinator’ that mature after a good few listens and really open your eyes to the range of possibilities available to this band.
Ultimately this is a very strong release from Eureka Machines; it combines rich song writing with a brilliantly catchy pop edge.
‘Champion The Underdog’ is available through Wrath Records from 03/05/11.