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The Catchers - Stopping To Fit (Setanta)

Britpop, Britrock, indie: call what you will but it's still generic. The Catchers are what you might call derivative. There's some Oasis thrown in, and a bit of just about every British band since 1990 that could strum an acoustic guitar. And, being from Northern Ireland, they could hardly tack together an album of dreary pop tunes without riding the wave of an obvious Undertones influence. The thing is, they pull it off quite well.

Assessed on its own merits, 'Stooping To Fit' isn't so bad and if it had the push of a major label behind it, it could knock several shades of crap out of Oasis/The Verve/Embrace. It could knock their stratospheric egos down a few steps too, with melodies to die for and impressive (if insipid) strings and brass arrangements that equal, and sometimes outdo, three-quarters of the pomp the aforementioned superstars spew out.

Still, when the press release describes the songs as "original and fresh", you can't help but laugh at the sheer untruth of it.

by Michael Gleeson