Kerrang! Reviews 'Zero For Conduct' - KKKKK

Quirkily rocking Anglo-Irish guitar pop genius

This is an album that makes you feel a little bit cooler for owning it. One of those records that you lose yourself in, tell your friends about and get pissy with them when they don't rush out to buy it straight away. Like the 'Vaya' EP by At The Drive-In or Brad's 'Shame' album, it is all the better for the fact that you know not everyone will understand it, but those who do will cherish it.

Admittedly on paper it all sounds a bit odd. Jetplane Landing are a geeky looking three-piece-two parts English, one part Irish. Their music is something akin to the art-rock stylings of Talking Heads and The Lapse bolted onto the classic pop songwriting suss of, say, Elvis Costello, and beefed up with chunky, Pixies-esque, post-punk guitars and the odd screamy moment. This may strike you as an awful idea, but in practice it works a treat - crispy nuggets of almost infuriatingly catch rock, with immersive lyrical musing and some completely swoonsome guitar flourishes.

The likes of "What The Argument Has Changed" and recent seven-inch "Summer Ends" find the trio putting pedal-to-metal in fine style to create joyously noisy pop music, while "The Last Thing I Should Do" and "End Of The Night" are achingly personal vignettes, dripping with soul. Frontman Andrew Ferris is an unlikely star in the making, but his impassioned delivery and incredible way with a tune would suggest some sort of underground hero status beckons. And the man's lyrics shine throughout, couplets like "And if I could make a list of my regrets, you would be at the top of every page, highlighted in red" on "What The Argument...' displaying a knack for the tearjerker that will have emo fans fumbling for the Handy Andys. Previous single "This Is Not Revolution Rock", by the same token, puts all these elements together to create and almost perfect slice of lo-fi melodicism

Not an album for Anaal Nathrakh fans, then. But for those who appreciate the little things in life 'Zero For Conduct' is a masterpiece.


- Ashley Bird, Kerrang!