The Clientele should be ashamed of themselves for crafting so lovable, rich Brit-pop nuggets like the breezy “Here Comes The Phantom” that recalls XTC if supported by a string section. The ease with which the group creates such airy magic is made more evident during the sweet “I Hope I Know You” while the dreamy “Isn’t Life Strange?” isn’t a cover of The Moody Blues classic but just as tastefully and ethereally performed.
Lead singer Alasdair MacLean makes artists like Matthew Sweet green with envy for the adorable “From Brighton Beach To Santa Monica” with its cavity-inducing harmonies and the equally strong sing-along pop oozing from “Winter On Victoria Street.” The lone departure is the pedal steel accented “The Queen Of Seville” but things once again are back to their beautiful blueprint with “Somebody Changed.”
The best thing that can be said about God Save the Clientele is that it’s so consistent that it’s quite scary. Whether you’re enjoying short gems like “Carnival On 75th Street” or the urgent feel on “No Dreams Last Night,” you feel as if they’ve been possessed by The Go-Betweens in their prime. A great album!