Good Shoes - No Hope, No Future
For a band who once facetiously proclaimed that 'Morden Life is Rubbish', young Londoners Good Shoes have made a reasonably successful career of lyrical vignettes concerning their native south-west borough. Emerging from the same scene as bands like The Maccabees and Mystery Jets with their debut album 'Think Before You Speak' in 2007, the quartet's second full-length effort is an equally concise exercise in basic uptempo indie-rock.
Yes, Good Shoes are certainly a band who wear their influences audaciously; whether it's The Libertines (the peppy shuffle and neat backwards-and-forwards key changes of 'The Way My Heart Beats'), Blur (the morose 'Everything You Do'), The Jam ('Times Change') or more zeitgeisty bands like Foals and Arctic Monkeys (the rounded, staccato cheeky-chappiness of 'I Know'), there's both an inherent Britishness about the Good Shoes sound, as well as a familiarity. In short, 'No Hope, No Future' is far from an original work.
Still, there's a certain allure to many of these tunes that comes from its unpolished, likeably underproduced wrapping. Mixing frantic, tight guitar chords with dark chugs and Rhys Jones's scratchy vocals makes for a pleasant enough listen, and even within the parameters of its short running time – just over 30 minutes – the foursome throw a few unexpected ingredients into the mix, like 'Do You Remember''s soft ska skitter. It's as dispensable as a snow sled in summer, but there are brief glints of both hope and a future for Good Shoes on this evidence.
Review by Lauren Murphy | 09:00 | Wednesday 13th January 2010 | Album Review