Label: Self-Released Release Date: 06/07/09 Link: Buy: Earth and Earthly Things... Cutaways are going to be big. If they do not achieve it will be a criminal shame; such is their brand of quirky indie, electro pop that to call it such is to do it a disservice; in short, it’s really, bloody good. Now, start this review by nipping down to the score I've attributed to the album (actually do this.) Ok...back now? Now, such a score does not imply perfection - rather, the score reflects that I genuinely believe this album has the intangible something that elevates it above the rest of its field, and many others in different pastures also. It’s so intelligent, and not in an obvious way - but the tunes, the hooks, the harmonies and the musical ideas so insidiously cement themselves in your heart and mind after a few listens (and this it will take, persevere) that it would be foolhardy of me to suggest that Earth and Earthly Thingsis not an important album; important in the sense that it has the potential to make a great many skeptical musos grin with unabashed glee. The album opens with a single, ‘Mile of Kroton’, and gets better and better. The aforementioned has a nice variety of musical ideas, some great rhythms and a playfulness that underpins the entire album. It might feel underwhelming at first, but once the increasingly urgent bass and synth pounding imprints, you will feel it as a heartbeat; essential and loving. ‘You get a little/You should want a little more’ very quickly becomes anthemic and the slower harmony of ‘So you say/You give a little more you say’ gives way to an absolutely beautiful segment. Following track ‘Weapon of Choice’ may not be uniformly as gripping, starting as it does with a relatively generic and short chord progression. The vocals are initially confusing, slightly aimless perhaps, but once you’ve honed in on the lyrics, and enjoyed briefly the descending guitar bridge, repeated three times to pave the way for a brief machine-gun drum break, the chorus is upon you. The chorus is upon you and you won’t shake it; wonderfully full, melodic and punchy, a gem amidst a sea of gold. As tempting as it is to follow the above pattern and provide in-depth (and admittedly gushing) analysis on the ins-and-outs of each track, to do so would be to cheat you out of the inevitably pleasant, in some cases euphoric sense of novelty. The album is so varied; whilst the over-arching theme is that of guitars, occasional shouted vocals and boy/girl juxtaposition with plenty of impact, every song has something new to offer. The dynamics are thoughtful and never prized thoughtlessly into the music, the overall effect being that of an album filled with A sides, with the odd B just to provide context. Earth and Earthly Things is Cutaways‘ debut album, and in many ways it’s hard to imagine where they will go from here. Here’s hoping that in the months and years to come they’ll be content to, at the very least, remain as fantastic. Rating:10/10 MP3: Cutaways - I Spilled Your Drink So You Broke My Heart