This second long-player from London's Pocketbooks is more of the twee pop that those who are familiar their début will be accustomed to. It's the kind of cutesy boy/girl indie that the press often have a field-day ripping apart, and this is often for good reason. Pocketbooks, however, are a bit different, and 'Carousel' is an absolute winner. These 10 tales are full of the wide-eyed abandon of being young, in love and with the world at your feet and the rest of your life to explore it.
'Carousel' is the antithesis of tedious lad-rock, with its twinkling piano lines and bookish (no pun intended) lyrics. 'The Sky At Night' is a tale of the grief of losing your girl to her astronomy obsession - “I lost my girl to a small refracting lens”. You don't get that with Kasabian. 'Sparklers', meanwhile, is the story of a shy girl falling in love with a fellow fruit picker who plans to chase the summer around the globe. The sweetness is contagious rather than sickly. Two particular highlights are recent single 'Promises Promises' and the melodic scamper of 'Harbour Lights' which is full of the buoyant optimism that Ooberman were great at creating.
The ingredients here could have resulted in a recipe for disaster, but rather than being nauseatingly fey, Pocketbooks have created a thoughtful, uplifting album that sets them apart from many of their contemporaries simply by the quality of their songs. Want to be wowed by the romance and excitement of life? Then get on the 'Carousel'.