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Athlete "Tourist" - Complete Review

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We'll have to wait till tomorrow for the full C Factor episode on Athlete. Even though I already know MY opinion, and I can guess what Chris's is, what with Mr Pott's ripping him off in two areas of business, we won't know Cameron's till tomorrow.

But for now it's time for the full, all inclusive album review.

We'll start with The Sticker On The Front.

First of all, it's red, which I like. Very eye-catching.

It says, however, "One of the most exciting British bands in years". As this is not attributed to anyone, I can only assume it's a product of the sticker-makers overactive imagination or severe misunderstanding of the word 'exciting'. Even the guy who served me at the music store warned me it was a bit "slow going" and tried to get me to buy The Doves instead (Should I have?)

Then again... "in recent years" some of the biggest British bands have been Coldplay, Snow Patrol and Keane, so "one of the most exciting" might not be that far off the mark.

Right, The Cover Photo

DO YOU KNOW? Until I just examined it now, I really had no idea what that was. But I think (and I could possibly be wrong), that it's the remains of a smashed up car? What would the Neighbours (and by that I mean Stu) say? He'd say that was bloody reckless, and admonish the 'Letes for encouraging this sort of behaviour. Driving, metaphorically and literally, is a privilege, not a right. Anyway, I guess the link here is that the album is called 'Tourist'. Oooh....maybe it's a plane. I wish it was a bit more obvious.

The Font

If you've ever read my Liz, you'll know how I feel about fonts (passionately). Athlete have chosen a very minimal and fairly generic font to use on the front and tracklisting, and I actually approve. Afterall, it suits them.


1. Chances

"Like the poster of Berlin on my wall,
Maybe there's a chance our walls might fall."

Do you know how multi-contextual and layered those two lines are? You could get an entire Media Studies essay out of it. IE:

  • Does he mean the band, or the city? (?)
  • There are three 'Walls' being referenced here: They are, The Bedroom Wall, The Berlin Wall, and the Metaphorical Wall Of Communication.
  • Mixing history, pop culture, and inter-personal relationships within TWO lines. Joel, you BLOODY genius. Is there nothing you can't tackle.

    Meanwhile, the song sounds a bit Radiohead.

    2. Half Light

    This is probably the most "rock and roll" song on the album. IE, it's still practically a ballad. Now, if you THINK this one sounds a bit like Blur (which you most certainly WILL), wait for:

    3. Tourist

    The Athlete's have LITERALLY stolen this from Blur's Think Tank. That is all I have to say.

    4. Trading Air

    I'm just at this stage hoping that Joel Pott isn't thinking about hosting a TV show from a harbour. I'm feeling a bit protective about my celebrity pal's business enterprises lately. Anyway, before I bought this album, I was just expecting a Coldplay tribute album. But it's actually much more Blur or Radiohead. This song sounds a bit like "No Surprises".

    5. Wires.


    Now, I personally love my habit of having a new favourite song every three or four days - it's great fun for me. And most of them come and go quite quickly. But this one, I can actually see still being the fave of the year on December 31st, 2005. It's just RIGHT up my ally. It's:

  • The Scientist
  • Run
  • Somewhere Only We Know
  • Karma Police
  • Live Forever

    COMBINED. It's just excellent.

    6. If I Found Out

    I really like this song, it's a bit summery and jaunty.

    7. Yesterday Threw Everything At Me

    Oooh, it's a bit Oasis! Not good Oasis mind, but it's at least up to "Talk Tonight" standards.

    8. Street Map

    Oh, thank GOD - there's a Pop Mechanics song. This is really good actually. It's a very sorrowful song, about not being at a street, but wanting to be at that street (Ramsay, presumably).

    9. Modern Mafia

    Guess who this sounds EXACTLY like? Super Furry Animals. That is VERY good news.

    10. Twenty Four Hours

    This is my second fave after wires. Probably because it sounds the most like Wires.

    11. I Love

    This is just an average ballad, except for the bit where they are playing Super Mario Brothers at the end.

    I don't know exactly what I think of this album. YESTERDAY, I loved it. But then I listened to it a few more times. I really like 5 songs on it, and that's enough I suppose. It's fairly good.

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