In an age of more money and confidence, the novelty and wonder of a small Irish band staying together long enough to release an album belong not only to a different century but indeed a different country.

Dublin outfit Hey Paulette deserve a special mention, however, for releasing their debut - 16 years after they split up.

In the late 1980s they brightened up a few people's days with their English-indebted guitar pop; put out an EP and a 7"; appeared on some compilations; recorded a great Peel session and then conformed to the natural order of the era by splitting up.

All those stages are gathered together here on an album which shows that the years have been kind to their witty lyrics and clever hooks, and where every song is made even more bittersweet by the fact that people should've paid more attention to them in the first place.

The opening quartet of Peel tracks make the biggest impression but others like 'Another Poet', 'My Half of the Pillow' and 'Inconsequential' show that they didn't need to catch the ferry and make a trip to the BBC in London to get the best from their songs.

If this is a record that belongs to a more innocent and less cynical time then it's also one that has nothing to fear from today. And those who now have a lot more opportunities for their talents can learn a bit from it.

Harry Guerin