The Selecter – Subculture (Out 15th June 2015 via DMF Records)

The Selecter – Subculture (Out 15th June 2015 via DMF Records)

The Selecter are keeping busier these days it seems more than any other time or at least since the hey-days of that Coventry based label. New single ‘Boxfresh’ opens with a comfortable groove of a lighter ska moves; the good impression is further cemented with the rich opening to ‘It Never Worked Out’ it sits right with the band’s championing of 2-Tone, Ska, Reggae & Soul which is “firmly rooted outside of  today’s mainstream genres” that being said, early door impressions the majority of the album sounds more like radio-certs, if not pod cast faves, least to us at WithGuitars, but enough of our audio enriched wonderfully dysfunctional lives as days drift on.

Another pair of winners bring me back to earth, first ‘Breakdown’ starts all Ghost  Town friendly, it feels darker, with Dreadzone worthy key signatures, the song sounds great here on ‘Subculture’, if the band can magic a live performance, this could easily be an anthem via either route, recorded and/or live. Then the easier going Soul meet Ska mash of ‘Karma’ sounds wholesome. Pauline Black vocals are as good now as ever.  But The Selecter is not just Pauline Black though; alongside an incredible talented band of musicians, they are co-fronted by original member Arthur ‘Gaps’ Hendrickson (who features extensively on Subculture). Pauline and Gaps will both be joining Jools Holland on an extensive tour of the UK this autumn, ahead of The Selecter’s own extensive headline tour in November & December.

Gaps vocal is on the mark with a leading on ‘Here Them A Come’ which works well. But on the flipside, a miss probably just for me, is the band’s cover of ‘Here Comes The Night’ any lingering disappointment is eased hearing the song which follows, ‘Stone Cold Sober’ if nothing else proves reggae goes down better than say pop-rock influences in my skewed view of the talented nine-piece band. So it no worry to hear ‘Walk The Walk’ a chilled call to arms or at least some realisation that being a bystander is nothing to be proud of.

If the ‘Made In Britain’ album first marked The Selecter’s return to the studio a few years ago,’Subculture’ adds even more colour and expression with enough solid songs to pepper a 2015 set. As an album ‘Subculture’ gets over the line with time to spare, a healthy instalment in the 2-tone originals discography. The Selecter have expanded their music, all we have to do with do the same with our mind-sets. A worthy 8.8/10

Steve Janes

Watch ‘Box Fresh’ video here

SUBCULTURE    UK    TOUR WINTER    2015

November

19 NORWICH    Open

20 LONDON    Clapham    Grand

21 NOTTINGHAM    Rock    City

22 CAMBRIDGE    Junction

December

03 YORK    The    Duchess

04 MANCHESTER    Academy    2

05 SHEFFIELD    The    Plug

06 NORTHAMPTON    Roadmender

09 BATH    Komedia

10 WREXHAM    Central    Station

11 DUBLIN    The    Academy

12 BELFAST    The    Limelight

13 BIRMINGHAM    o2    Academy    2

17 READING    Bowery    District

18 EXETER    Phoenix

19 PORTSMOUTH    Wedgewood    Rooms

www.theselecter.net    /    www.facebook.com/TheSelecter

 

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The Selecter – Subculture (Out 15th June 2015 via DMF Records)