Various - Ejector Seat Compilation Volume 1: The Theme is Music

Bill Cummings 05/01/2005

Rating: 4/5

Southampton's four-pronged gig promotional team release an excellent compilation to accompany their legendary gig nights. They claim to “Follow their ears not their eyes”, a worthy policy which we here at GIITTV zine fully endorse.

Opener Turncoat is brilliant: it has a Joy Division-by-way-of-Beta Band charm about it, whilst Objects Gravity is a cool raw electro clash beast, sounds like a mash up between latter blur and Depeche Mode. You can keep the Bravery with synth-rock this good. Next up is Alaskan Pipeline's 'Grandfather Clock', an atmospheric alt rocker that builds and builds in a haunting fashion. Weary vocals and spindly guitar lines add to a sense of late night desperation, it's brilliant.
Elsewhere the ever-reliable Black Nielson weigh in with a folky female fronted indie pop song of rare beauty, and The Sways' twee little ditty 'The Barbonate Ballet' cuts a delightful medieval style.

Next up is Molly's nine minute post-rock instrumental, containing enough noise to delight any self respecting Mogwai fan. The Tri City President sound a bit like MBV if they had used acoustic guitars instead of electric ones, whilst the Excellent Bone Machine's The Ocean's Angry sounds like what happens when Depeche Mode steal the samples from Massive attack. Elsewhere, Birdpen produce a trip-hop sound a tad like Primal Scream, while Soma High pull out a brilliant slab of Radiohead-esque rock balladry it sounds a tad like 'Pyramid Song', which isn't a bad thing.

The well-respected Truckers Goldrush appear with a typically gorgeous slice of Byrdsy alt country, 'All the Faces'. If only bands like this managed to sneak into the mainstream where they belong. Only Dlugokecki's “Belted in Safely” is even vaguely skippable with its standard indie sound, whilst ILL Starred Captain is what happens when the White Stripes, start sounding like White Album-era Beatles.

A really good compilation, this is how they should be made. It's full of ideas and new sounds and really does expose some groups that wouldn't be heard by a wider audience. And at three pounds for seventeen tracks, this album is good value too.