The Wave Pictures – A Season in Hull

Album Review by Chris Buckle | 27 Jan 2016
Album title: A Season in Hull
Artist: The Wave Pictures
Label: Wymeswold Records
Release date: 12 Feb

So, how did you celebrate your last birthday? Pub, was it? Dinner with friends perhaps? Sigh – how unproductive. You want to take a leaf out of the ever-prolific Dave Tattersall’s book: when his birthday last rolled around, he took the opportunity to gather the rest of The Wave Pictures and record an album start to finish, with everyone playing together live into a single microphone.

This lo-fi, devil-may-care air translates well to record, with A Season in Hull capturing and accentuating the band’s characteristic camaraderie and casual, Jonathan Richman-esque charm – not least on the playfully surreal Tropical Fish and the breezy, Modern Lovers-referencing The Coaster in Santa Cruz.

Admittedly, the stripped-down setup has drawbacks too, leaving the material with nowhere to hide and exposing an uncharacteristic patchiness. But given the record’s low-key genesis and release (limited edition, vinyl-only), that seems excusable, with enough flashes of genius to warrant raising a glass.

Playing Glasgow Old Hairdressers on 23 Feb; Edinburgh Sneaky Pete's on 24 Feb and Manchester Night & Day on 25 Feb