Helmet – Seeing Eye Dog
Yeah, OK, so it says Helmet on the packet but sooner or later you're going to have to face the fact that the band who blew your face off in the early 90s is dead dead dead and what currently labours under that moniker is probably more accurately referred to as Page Hamilton and the Helmets.
As with their other two latter-day releases, Seeing Eye Dog is full of the choppy, obstinate guitar and intermittently gruff/tuneful vocal stylings of that aforementioned (and only remaining) founder member and it does occasionally fizz with the same genius of 20 years prior. But it's all far too infrequent, and the weakness of the songs is compounded by stale production.
In Person boasts the album's only truly infectious chorus line, though it's cancelled out by the boring synth-led Vangelis-isms of Morphing and a distinctly underwhelming stab at the Beatles' And Your Bird Can Sing. It's anyone's guess as to why. [Austin Tasseltine]
Playing The Cathouse, Glasgow on 17 Dec.http://www.helmetmusic.com