Album: Keane, Perfect Symmetry, (Island)
A supermarket rock band it's OK to like
Following their initial flourish, it seems to be even longer since Keane – the Supermarket Rock band it's secretly OK to appreciate – did something notable than it is since their somersault-happy namesake Robbie scored a league goal.
If 2006's 'Under the Iron Sea' was Keane's unloved we-are-serious album, this is Keane's pop record. From the opening "Oooh!", lead single "Spiralling" is some of the year's most euphoric pop this side of the Alphabeat album. 'Perfect Symmetry' continues in that vein for most of its duration.
For the first four tracks, that echoey old piano stays firmly locked in storage as Tim Rice-Oxley shows off his shiny new synthesizers.
Few could have predicted that the significant influences on the third Keane album would be Sparks, Bowie and above all the New Romantics (right down to the spoken-word French bit on "Black Burning Heart"). Keep the somersaults on hold, but 'Perfect Symmetry' is worth at least a cheery forward roll.
Pick of the album: Something kinda oooh: 'Spiralling'