Brummie outfit The Twang have never enjoyed the same level of success as their fellow Midlanders The Enemy. Having both released their debut albums around the same time, there appeared to be space for only one annoying vocal style in the hearts of Britain’s indie kids.
That said, The Twang are by no means flops and this, their third album, seems to sit more comfortably than its predecessors. The band replaced their drummer, after he stole over £10,000 of equipment from them, but it would be unfair to credit their change in sound solely to this. Phil, the band’s vocalist, has said that the band afforded themselves more freedom on 10:20 as this album was entirely self-funded. Normally this could be taken to mean that a band had gone off on a totally abstract tangent, deviating from what their fans are used to. However, in The Twang’s case, it seems that having total control has led the band down a path which will satisfy their die-hard fans whilst at the same time potentially attracting a whole bunch more.
Songs like ‘Mainline’ and ‘Last Laugh’ are catchy without being annoying, while more sombre offerings such as ‘Take This On’ and ‘Wait Forever’ maintain strong melodies. The album is a risk, because it is more easy to label as ‘generic inoffensive indie’ than ‘quite shouty Brummie songs’ (the category that I would have put The Twang into before hearing 10:20). Whilst potentially less grating, ‘generic inoffensive indie’ can leave less of a mark than more out-there work, and while I’d happily put this on of a hungover Sunday, I’m not sure it has the anthemic quality of their debut album. This means that, although the songs can be pleasing, they might just be a bit too forgettable.