After a long anticipated wait – 4 years to be precise – the three lovely lads from Aberdeen, who make up indie rock band The Xcerts, have delivered once again in the form of their new album There Is Only You. The album is not necessarily different from its preludes, but there is something about it that is incredibly charming and addictive, leaving you wanting to hit the repeat button after the first listen.
Since I began following the band three years ago, it is amazing to see how far they have come with airplay on Radio 1, a UK, and now European tour with fellow Scottish rockers Twin Atlantic, and three brilliant albums under their belts.
You can tell the album demanded a lot from the boys as although album making is an art, they have managed to make it look easy. Excellent teaser singles, ‘Shaking In The Water’ and ‘Pop Song’ were not misleading guides to the rest of the album. Current single, ‘Pop Song’ – as the name suggests adds a more commercial side to the band, previously unseen, and true to its nature is catchy in every way. The lyrics “You haunt me/Like a Pop Song”, certainly haunt my head all day. The track is also accompanied by a jazzy Elton John piano vibe and a brilliant music video in which the band parody other famous artists in a Blink-182 ‘All the Small Things’ style.
Other stand out tracks include ‘Love Like This’, in which lead singer Murray Macleod crones my favourite lyrics: “Oh you’re too high to talk/So we’ll just stop and speak in the morning”, and ‘Kevin Costner’. This track is just like the classic rom-coms the actor has starred in; it begins slowly with classical elements and harmonies and then builds in pace with the help of increasing drums; all leading up to the dramatic finale where Murray swoons “If love is warm/Why am I so cold?”. Although this may seem like they are putting out a sad and sentimental vibe, which other writers have declared as “teenage-esque angst”, (which is furthered by the slow and melancholy album title track), there is more to it than that. In fact, Macleod himself said in recent RockSound interview that the album is appropriate for anyone and everyone: “Whether you’re a 14-year-old that’s just had their first kiss, or an adult going through divorce, there’s more to this album than just me whining.”
There Is Only You also comes across brilliantly live; I was lucky enough to see The Xcerts perform it, and a few golden oldies, at the Guildhall last week supporting Twin Atlantic. They had an amazing sound which was paired with minimal staging – mirroring the stripped down nature of the album which allows the quality of the instrument playing and vocals to shine through. Unfortunately, the band have decided to postpone their own headline tour in favour of continuing supporting on the Great Divide tour. However, I see this as a great opportunity for the album to gain momentum and for the band to receive the credit they deserve. Considering the album has already debuted at number 8 on the Official Rock and Metal Albums Top 40, I advise snapping tickets up if you like to be ahead of the music game and if you are into similar bands such as The 1975 and The Killers. Another top tip is to get the deluxe edition which includes two extra gems.
There Is Only You is out now on Raygun Music.
Tickets are still available to buy for their upcoming headline tour and can be found here.