Album review: Public Service Broadcasting – Inform - Educate - Entertain

Public Service Broadcasting - Inform - Educate - Entertain

Public Service Broadcasting - Inform - Educate - Entertain - Credit: Archant

Their hotly-anticipated debut long player is a triumph of unlikely vintage samples and an up-to-the-minute mashing of live instruments and electro meddling.

The debut record from this duo, who sample archive spoken-word material from Studio Canal, the BFI and American public information films, is one of the most hotly anticipated this summer.

These well-chosen vintage reels let PSB’s tunes thrust forth with noble purpose, a clutch of riffs realised on synths and “proper” instruments under one arm, and a bafflingly broad spectrum of samples under the other.

From the guitar-driven Signal 30 via Spitfire’s commentator dreaming of a plane that will fly like a bird, the album is populated with plummy accents that would sound naff in many bands’ hands.

It’s the considered, innovative arrangements and melodic adventurism that keeps this interesting.

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From the stirring guitar-and-synth wonder of Lit Up to the banjo refrain on Roygbiv, which morphs into that of warm synths, PSB comes on like an energised Lemon Jelly, as if Orbital’s nous had been grafted onto the former’s gelatinous lounge music in a lab. Absorbing stuff.

4 stars

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