Mercury Records - 2004 - 45 minutes

Johnny Borrell, lead singer with Razorlight, has been talking the talk. Those willing to listen have heard him proclaim his own song-writing genius. The kind of confident self-promotion that is usually shunned on this side of the Atlantic can have people itching to take you down a peg or three.

So it is a little disappointing to report that there is quite a bit to recommend this mouthy four-piece. Certainly there are enough promising songs on this record to suggest that they may one day be able to match the walk to the talk. At its best this is rousing, infectious music, songs like the title track, 'Don't Go Back to Dalston' and 'Golden Touch' make all the right noises. Admittedly, every single track on this album makes pretty similar noises, but the band has an assured grasp of their material and are never tempted to over-reach.

Razorlight seem to have a knack for finding the right melodies, or at least stealing them from the right places. Originality is not something they can lay claim to - the bands that inspired them and many of their contemporaries have tread this ground before - but there is an enthusiastic, vibrant nature to their music, and for a debut release that is just about enough.

While the goodwill usually afforded new bands could yet be smothered by the hype (much of it self-generated) that has accompanied them, given time and a touch more originality, they could yet prove to be as good as they think they are.

Ray Donoghue

Tracklisting: Leave Me alone - Rock n Roll Lies - Vice - Up All Night - Which Way Is Out - Rip It Up - Don't Go Back To Dalston - Golden Touch - Stumble And Fall - Get It And Go - In The City - To The Sea - Fall Fall Fall