A record that actually manages to hit some of the lofty targets it aims for, 'In Towers and Clouds', the debut album from The Immediate, suggests this Dublin four-piece should be well capable of earning more than the often easily won praise of the Irish music scene.

Complex and ambitious is fair enough, but making the result listenable is an altogether more difficult task. Thankfully, the often direct songs that make up the better tracks on this album deserve to have a wider audience doing the listening.

Preceded by the shimmering guitar of 'Fashion or Faith' and followed by the rousing 'Don't You Ever', 'Big Sad Eyes' remains the purest pop here, finding the group in top form. In fact even some of the more aimless detours towards the end of the record prove to be pleasant, if uneventful, journeys.

That all four members of the band share bass, drum, guitar and vocal duties gives a unique spin to The Immediate's sound, multiplying the directions they can go in. With no less than three potential vocalists, the pass-the-parcel style rotation of instruments in a live setting proves particularly entertaining. 

However, truly focused music rarely emerges from such a democratic environment. The sheer variety on offer can be exhilarating, but the ruthless discipline that will force a band to play to its strengths is absent here. That said, a debut album is more about displaying potential than realising it, and enough here glitters to suggest the future may be bright indeed.

Ray Donoghue