Label: Full Time Hobby – FTH081CDA
Format: CD, Album
Style: Folk Rock, Indie Rock
It’s real easy to be cynical about The Leisure Society is the wake of the unexpected Ivor Novello nomination – it’s a quiet album, wrapped in its own world without ever directly engaging the listener, and it’s one that doesn’t deviate much (if at all) from a pattern it establishes within one track. ‘Learn some more instruments’, ‘lighten up a bit’, and ‘pay someone else money to record and produce it’ would all be pretty valid suggestions to make.
To take that attitude, though, would be to completely ignore the charm this album has. Like all the great lo-fi albums, it gets you on its side – you can’t help but notice that you’re listening to an underdog, and you can’t help but root for him, whether the forces he’s up against are the music business or an ex-girlfriend. Nick Drake comes to mind for the intimacy you start to feel with the voice you’re hearing, although Nick Hemming hasn’t quite achieved that level of mastery yet.
“The Last of the Melting Snow”, for the record, is lovely. It’s difficult to see why it was plucked from obscurity for the nomination, because it doesn’t really rise that far above anything else on the album, nor is it the absolute stunner you will probably be hoping for. It is, however, very good. Considering what else has been nominated, it might even win, and might even deserve it.
Review by Iai