Diversity is good sometimes. It can also be frustrating and a source of conflict, but, musically speaking, it is generally welcomed by tired hacks and music lovers alike. ‘Gendres’ is the latest release from The Pure Conjecture, and it’s positively different.
Comprising of Cardiff-based vintner Matt Eaton and members of bands such as The Hazey Janes, Pendragon and British Sea Power, variety should perhaps be expected. “Roadworks On Memory Lane” isn’t the most inspiring opener – imagine Half Man Half Biscuit gone humourless – but “Surfin’ Sunset” quickly transports us to dreamland. In all truth, the absence of vocals does no harm.
“Opinion Fatigue” is a strange one, but hugely pleasant on the ears. Similarly, “I Just Want You To Love Me” redresses the blues as something you could take home to your mother. Somewhere, The Turtles are smiling. For those of the funk persuasion, “Midnight Dancing” will be a standout track. “What’s Worse” doesn’t really step forward when asked. Instead, it lingers in the background like a cool breeze. The album ends on “I Thought I'd Get Along With You,” which sounds like it belongs on a 1980s film starring Chevy Chase. Depending on your take on Chase, this could either be a good thing or a dreadful thing.
So, it’s a rather unusual album, despite its at-times conventional approach. Whether it’s background music or something more substantial, it’s pretty good.