Frightened Rabbit have long been one of those 'buzz' bands, a group whose reputation as a solid, hard-working and inventive guitar band precedes them. Their 2010 album The Winter of Mixed Drinks was critically adored and charted respectably but if that LP didn't thrust the Scottish five-piece towards the upper echelon of festival bills Europe-wide, we don't know if it'll ever happen.
Is that a criticism of Pedestrian Verse? Not in the slightest, no. The band's fourth record has the necessary 'oomph' to delight their fans, not to mention attract a gaggle of new ones, but everyone who's familiar with this band (and particularly those who have seen them live) know that they're a very well kept secret. Perhaps too well. Frightened Rabbit are adored at home but have struggled to achieve any real level of sustained success overseas, sort of like a Scottish version of The Frames.
Pedestrian Verse is peppered with interesting songs. Album opener 'Acts of Man' is wonderfully constructed and produced, while 'Holy' moves along comfortably with a Joy Division-esque stride. Track four though, 'The Woodpile', is Frightened Rabbit at their best - a slow-build to a driving rock melody, while Scott Hutchison's heavily-accented vocals rise above the mix marking one of the highpoints in the band's entire catalogue.
Pedestrian Verse is a very solid guitar record - playful, yet maturely composed. This album deserves to be heard by many and one can only hope that the recent resurgence in guitar-based music in the UK sheds some more light on this record. It deserves to be heard.