Label: Zero Summer Website: Another day, another wide-eyed male troubadour vying for your attention. Today’s offering is Scottish-born Alexi Murdoch, whose brand of sweetly apologetic guitar-pop has found him sound tracking US TV show The OC, nestled alongside other inoffensive acts such as Jem, The Jets and Doves, and Zach Braff’s now-ubiquitous The Garden State. One thing laudable about Murdoch is his insistent shying away from major record labels – he hasn’t hitched himself onto a major record label and taken the easy way to success, like so many of his contemporaries, preferring to self-release his records - although on listening to his debut album, you may wonder if his abstinence was worth it. For if its credibility Murdoch is vying for, he’ll need more than this parched collection of songs to wrestle worn-out copies of ‘For Emma, Forever Ago’ from Indie-folkie’s clutching hands. Admittedly, ‘Time Without Consequence’ does not get off to such a bad start – opener ‘All My Days’ has a similar, chugging guitar line and drawled brogue as Nick Drake’s gorgeous ‘Pink Moon’ –comparisons to Nick Drake can only be a good thing for Murdoch – and soundtrack culprit ‘Orange Sky’ is oddly affecting, it’s rote, clichéd lyrics giving the song a weary air. But, unfortunately, it’s all downhill from here – ‘Home’ is a deadly-dull excursion into post-rock that churns on for just far too long; it’s squealing, slightly-pathetic reams of feedback are nothing that will keep Mogwai up at night – and ‘ 12’ is almost a harrowing 7 minutes long; there are only a couple of artists I will sit through a 7 minute track for (Joanna Newsom springs to mind) but Alexi Murdoch isn’t one of them. These jaunts into experimentalism are the only thing that mars the surface of Murdoch’s sensitive singer-songwriter façade – the rest of the record is pure poor man’s Nick Drake; the obtuse songwriting, dreary, trite sentiments and flat vocals will have you diving for your copy of ‘Pink Moon’ in search of the real deal. My advice to you is completely avoid if possible – the Sam Beams and Justin Vernons can relax; ‘Time Without Consequence’ isn’t going to knock the indie-folk crown from their bearded heads. Rating: 2/10