Music Article

Short Takes

EW reviews four hot new albums -- We take a closer look at titles by Maximo Park, Roots Manuva, Celso Fonseca, and Youth Group

EW reviews four hot new albums

SHORT TAKES

MAXIMO PARK
A Certain Trigger

What has stop-start guitars, twitchy vocals, and self-excavating lyrics? Yes, it's another neo-retro-post-punk band from the U.K. Originality isn't their strong suit, but this quintet have enough energizing, lager-spilling choruses to make their skinny-tied predecessors proud. B

ROOTS MANUVA
Awfully Deep

It takes a certain kind of MC to admit ''Sometimes I hate myself/Sometimes I love myself.'' A British one, apparently — because this London MC's third album is a thrilling mix of moody ambivalence and soulful reggae-tinged hip-hop. B+

CELSO FONSECA
Rive Gauche Rio

Just when you thought you never needed to buy another bossa nova album, the simmering, summery Rive Gauche Rio comes along. The gauzy world-music-style cover of Damien Rice's ''Delicate'' is to be avoided, but the nine songs Fonseca wrote — instant classics of the Jobim variety — are as intoxicating as a caipirinha. B+

YOUTH GROUP
Skeleton Jar

This Sydney quartet, led by singer-guitarist Toby Martin, balances garage bombast with pretty-boy blues for a sophomore CD that glimmers like a Death Cab from Down Under. B

Originally posted May 23, 2005 Published in issue #821-822 May 27, 2005 Order article reprints