The zany image and song titles will convince some of the more elite members of the chin-stroke mafia to avoid Fight Like Apes and seek further enlightenment within the pages of The Wire, but '...Mystery of the Golden Medallion' could be one of those rare cases when some give-anything-a-go types actually side with them.

As evidenced by 'Something Global' and 'Jake Summers', Fight Like Apes can write good, off-kilter pop songs and the energy and enthusiasm they summon up can't be learned - and are things more groups could do with a dose of.

But throughout this record there's the nagging feeling that they stray too close to the 'novelty act' ghetto and should think more of their talents. Most of the lyrics are nonsense, there are samples and effects that add nothing to the songs and a five-second track that's too jokey and should be left to hardcore bands.

That's the bad: there is also some excellent singing from MayKay (a singer whose depth only appears in flashes here), some beautifully atmospheric moments and an equally powerfully feeling that there's a better group waiting to get out - all come together on the album's best track, eh, 'Lumpy Dough'.

So before they pile into the studio the next time, they need to figure out what they want to be: a fun night out or something more. Over to you, lady and gents.

Harry Guerin