tue 20/10/2020

CD: Miles Kane – Colour of the Trap | reviews, news & interviews

CD: Miles Kane – Colour of the Trap

CD: Miles Kane – Colour of the Trap

Glove at first sight? The solo debut from the erstwhile Last Shadow Puppet

I missed out on Miles Kane's earlier work with The Rascals, but was quickly seduced by his partnership with Arctic Monkey Alex Turner as The Last Shadow Puppets, whose cinematic grandeur struck the right balance between contemporary pop, wistful nostalgia and terrific haircuts. This leg-up has given Kane's new album a high profile, and while it certainly has its moments, the 25-year-old from the Wirral wears his influences a little too obviously here.

If an alien with a heavy schedule downloaded Colour of the Trap they could get a pretty neat round-up of rock history in one sitting. Bolanesque romanticism? Check ("My Fantasy", with guest vocalist Noel Gallagher). Lennony whine? Check ("Colour of the Trap"). Choppy Echo and the Bunnymen riffs? Check ("Better Left Invisible"). This is not so much an album as a ridiculous musical mosaic. There are even echoes of Golden Earring, Harry Nilsson, The Stone Roses and, for heaven's sake, The Banana Splits. Presumably Kane couldn't get a sample of a kitchen sink in time.

Cherry-picking the past is no cardinal sin in itself, but it rarely makes for a lasting album. I can't imagine Duffy's latest exercise in nostalgia enduring, or the recent Beady Eye album being on many people’s playlists, and Kane’s retro approach, however well-intentioned, may suffer the same fate. I'm sure he put his heart and soul into his solo debut, but at times this sounds more like a scroll through a record rack than a cohesive display of creativity.

There is undeniably great potential here. I'm definitely partial to "Happenstance", the Paris-tinged duet with Clémence Poésy. And "Telepathy", a collaboration with Alex Turner, has a fetching full-bodied Duane Eddy twang to it. And even better, while enquiring about Kane I discovered there's a new Arctic Monkeys album out in June.

Watch Miles Kane perform "Come Closer"


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