In case you weren't aware, guillemots are actually a breed of cliff-dwelling short winged birds and not some fancy French aristocratic family name. So now you know. The band Guillemots, however, are neither French, short-winged, nor birds. Well, there's one bird in the London-based four piece, if you will. Sorry. Ahem. This release is a compilation of their reasonably-hard-to-find first two EPs, I Saw Such Things In My Sleep and Trains To Brazil, and it's emphatically the latter that sparkles here. Always in danger of slipping into mediocrity, Guillemots fully display a perilous inclination for hit-and-miss moments on From The Cliffs. However, it's their oddball lyrics, offbeat arrangements and clever use of samples and effects that ultimately save them from the cesspit of bland bands. The first three tracks in particular are immediately charming; Trains To Brazil could and should be both a hit and a summer pop anthem, and Fyfe Dangerfield's soaring vocals on the enchanting Made Up Love Song #43 elevate them above anything any similar band are peddling at present. It's clear from tracks like the Zutons-esque reggae vibes of Go Away, or the several Dexys-like horn sections throughout that Guillemots are a band with an eclectic palate. However, they stumble on the latter tracks (i.e. the ISSTIMS EP), a cluster of over-long and tedious ballads (Cats Eyes, Over The Stairs) that would be at home in the larynx of someone like - dare I say it - Damien Rice or - shudder, spit, sign of the cross etc - Jamie Cullum. A real pity, considering the potential for experimentation and innovation displayed on the more uptempo tracks. However, this album must be judged on what it is alone; merely a collection of two detached and very different EPs. Not a bad start for Guillemots, and certainly a tasty appetiser for their debut album proper.