This month, or for as long as I can muster the will, we’ll be reappraising the records that didn’t make the 2007 Top 20 either because a) I didn’t deem them up to scratch at the time, b) I forgot about them, c) I hadn’t actually heard them or d) I was plain wrong. Messing up the categories straight away, Lightspeed Champion gets the first shout because I didn’t listen to this properly until mid-December.
Dev Hynes comes hot from Test Icicles – the charmingly named nu-rave, shouty-punk, whatever-label-you-can-rustle-up outfit who never quite made it big. He’s taken a long, hard look at himself, declared himself happy with the outlandish hair and threads but changed tack completely for the music. Ticking personal boxes for me, he now sounds as if he’s transmitting direct from Postcard records in the early ‘80s, with some first-album Prefab Sprout chucked in for winning measure. It’s fiddly, beguiling, inventive, sensitive pop… about drinking gin and throwing up.
Now Junior thought this was pretty special and waltzed around with the smallest of the many toy babies filling up our living room. I could tell from her beam that she was delighted Dad had finally seen sense and given Dev his props; she promised to take a more integral role on Jukebox Junior’s steering committee in future, to avoid similar mishaps. As for Lightspeed Champion’s future, he’s our hot tip for 2008. Watch him plummet.