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NME review of Remote Luxury Print E-mail
Saturday, 02 March 1985

Remote Luxury


This is persuasive, intelligent work - a guitar band able to turn riffs and phrases over and over like pieces of rough crystal, until a shining song has been polished out of it. Now they just need something to write about.

This central void, already evident on the many earlier Church LPs and singles, is the dilemma all these prismatic bangle-jangle band are facing and which only The Smiths have so far resolved. As prettily as these tunes chime, there's nothing but marshmallow underneath. On the one moment where The Church soil their hands a bit - wth the rinky-dink beat of 'Maybe These Boys' - they get clumsy and embarrassed.

Sometimes it's good enough to keep, like 'Constant In Opal' and 'Shadow Cabinet', where themes are embellished with sufficient ingenuity to make it stick. But when you're reduced to noting physical weaknesses (too-pallid singing, too-smooth rhythms) and nothing else, the faceless cut of it all is inescapable. The strings are singing a fragile tune.

Richard Cook

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