I'm of the opinion that slow-burning careers are the way to go. The reason there seems never to have been any real pressure on Tunng is that the band have never really invited it. They've never found themselves under either intense scrutiny or the glare of the spotlight. They've always been on the verge of a breakthrough, but never quite made it, despite seeming to get better with every album they put out. When I heard news of their return with Turbines, my first reaction was, 'oh, they're still together?' I was pleasantly surprised; it could have been much worse. three years is a long time in music, after all: bands have formed and split up in less time than that. Tunng frontman Mike Lindsay went off and put out the intriguing Cheek Mountain Thief album last year, displaying a clear consistency that finally hinted at him coming into his own as a songwriter. A return to his full-band vehicle confirms that Tunng have indeed taken another step up, and the follow-up to ...And Then We Saw Land finds the sextet honing their rich and spacious sound, and turning it into an impressively offbeat pop record. The band's fifth album is as nuanced as their previous work, but the break from Tunng-related activities has helped them tap into a rich vein of creativity.

One thing about Tunng is that, when they aren't in a rush, they will have little desire to express anything to the contrary, and this means that Turbines is a warm, gentle and melodic record in typical Tunng style. They haven't changed much of anything up, just shorn some things away. The dazzling acoustic pop of 'Bloodlines' is just one example of this new-found direct approach. They've been grouped into the 'folktronica' genre in the past, but the presence of electronics on their new record establishes them as a complementary gesture rather than the driving force. Treated organs and keyboards crop up, along with loping syncopation, on 'The Village'; arguably the most musically accomplished moment on the album, it also features an instantly hummable melody - its choice as lead single was a no-brainer, but there's a more immediate slant to the new songs anyway, so I daresay that the band were spoilt for choice.

Even the intricate guitar work and tricky time signature of 'Follow' are shot through with accessibility - it's the kind of delightfully awkward pop that Tunng have come to excel at. There's a pleasing intimacy found in some of the new material, as well - for all its layers and surprising musical twists, there's something about the way Lindsay and co-vocalist Ashley Bates's voices play off each other - a prime example being their partnership on the insistent 'So Far From Here' - that strips everything right back to the fact that it's six people in a room trying to creatie music with a sense of closeness to it. Each separate element of Tunng's sound has been refined over the years, and on Turbines they sound like their most confident selves. A slow-burning album for a slow-burning career, then; however, this brush with immediacy could reap further rewards for the band.