There's a hilarious book just waiting to be written on all the where-are-they-now? acts who've appeared on journalist-generated next big thing lists over the last 25 years and the hyperbole which accompanied the predictions of global stardom (there's also a very depressing book to be written on all the amazing musicians who weren't the flavour of the afternoon, but that's another rant).

The pre-release hype for Victoria 'Little Boots' Hesketh's debut has, of course, shown similar restraint - if the first listen was not a life-changing experience, then at least people would stop what they were doing (in this case digging a hole in a garden) and marvel (the hole still got dug).

That's no slight on this 25-year-old but on an industry which goes over-the-top when it comes to praising new artists and then loses interest before the second album is even recorded. It would be a pity - but no surprise - if that happened Hesketh, because she shows that it's a question of time, not talent.

Always a good sign for the future, Hesketh co-wrote 12 of the 13 songs here, can deliver a line well and in 'New in Town' and 'Earth Quake' has two great floor fillers. But a lot of perfectly agreeable pop records of the past decade are worthy of that kind of praise and, like their creators, Hesketh needs to work on her own identity - the problem with 'Hands' is that too much of it sounds like the comfort zone where Madonna resides these days.

Perhaps that awareness is already there. The hidden closing track, which was written solely by Hesketh, ditches the synths and beats in favour of just a piano, and while having nothing in common with the rest of the songs, is one of the best.

We should be interested in what she does next; hopefully we'll get the chance to hear it.

Harry Guerin