Release date: 26/10/09 Website: To be honest, The Dead Shores’ single ‘Modern Men’ confuses me. Yes it’s a witty riposte to the in-yer-face metrosexual culture, but Craig Whitfield’s voice stubbornly refuses to be the voice of derision that it needs to be in order to pull off a tangible attack on a theme he so eloquently riffs on. The befuddlement results from the strength of his resolution - he sounds like a man who sort of wouldn’t mind if you cut the crusts off his sandwiches, please, yeah? Or that he’s thinking of something else (perhaps “I actually quite like GQ”) whilst he’s singing. Whereas to live up to the Mick Jones-esque crashbangwallop of the grimy tangle of guitar, he’d need a bit more figurative spunk. It is undeniable, however, that they have a discernible urban poetry about them. They’re a bit of a Clash-Shambles, so to speak - and, to his credit and irrefutable virtuosity, no-one ever accused Peter Doherty of sounding particularly industrious. Despite the inevitable comparisons, they have their own allure. Modern Men has not a rose seed of romanticism, nor a saliva goblet of real aggression, but it does have bon mot in bucket loads - and after a few attempts to get over your urges to whack some vigour into the man, you begin to get it. It’s an insightful, albeit apathetic, commentary on someone Whitfield doesn’t ever want to be - a charming departure from the all too common whinging longings for whatever. I recommend sticking it on. Rating: 8/10