Malcolm Middleton - Waxing Gibbous
(Full Time Hobby)
The former Arab Strapper has had some wonderful moments in his seven year solo career, but this fifth album has a faint whiff of treading water about it. The wry, bittersweet lyrical observations are still present in the likes of ‘Don’t Want to Sleep Tonight’ and ‘Ballad of Fuck All’, but there is an understated feel to the whole thing, and there are no moments that reach the truly affecting heights of 2007’s A Brighter Beat. The music sways between folk, rock and electronica well enough, but it’s all frustratingly underwhelming when you know what Middleton is really capable of.