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MJ Hibbett and the Validators

Regardez Ecoutez Et Repetez (Artists Against Success)

By • Jun 6th, 2009 • Category: Album review

For the uninitiated, Mark Hibbett is a one-man band from Leicester (or thereabouts) and his Validators are a motley bunch who augment the man’s indiepop tunes and take them from being chipper singer-songwriter stuff to rather more filled-out polished tunes.

As you’d imagine it’s at least in part about the lyrics – and even the titles in a sense – think ballboy or Half Man Half Biscuit for the rambling humour and indeed summary of the song in one line.

‘Being Happy Doesn’t Make You Stupid’ opens and is a joyous, C86 rush and a fine way to start any album, while ‘Do More Eat Less’ shows sharp comic development beyond the obvious – “weebles in distress” is as good a three-word description of Britain’s big-boned society as you’ll get. ‘Do The Indie Kid’, similarly, is a silly tune that takes in time travel, continental musical tastes and bad dancing at weddings. ‘Best Behaviour’ concentrates less on the lyrics, but Hibbett’s singing style – not really technically gifted – is augmented by Emma Pattinson’s backing and some musically adept work from the Validators.

Other highlights are ‘Red Black Gold’, quite simply a great indie rock tune with a blast of a chorus and there’s more silliness on ‘My Boss Was In An Indie Band Once’, while similarly, except in a Poguesey stylee, ‘We’re Old And We’re Tired (and we want to go home’) is a riotous ode to what happens to bands once the first flushes of youth have gone.

An album which almost always hits the mark (‘It Only Works Because You’re Here’ the exception being a wee bit sentimental for its own good) it is one I’d singularly recommend to fans of all the bands mentioned above. Plus everyone else who enjoys a good tune and a snappy lyric. And if that’s not you, why are you here?

MJ Hibbett & The Validators - Regardez, Ecoutez Et Repetez Download via iTunes

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