Review: Carl Barat and the Jackals – Let It Reign

It is with great sadness that we see a former trailblazer pass beyond his ephemeral moment, something commonly known as ‘getting on a bit’. Just as nobody who wasn’t a pretty serious fan of ‘If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next’ is ever realistically going to listen to the Manic’s 2014 album ‘Futurology’, I can’t see Let It Reign making much of an impact outside a pretty hard core of Pete/Carl fan clubs. Speaking as a serious fan of ‘Up the Bracket’ I am struggling to find anything stand out about Carl’s latest effort. The World War One, red coats and Mockney aesthetic that seemed so fresh in 2001 now feels forced, false and uninspiring. ‘Glory Days’ might kick of side one with some bongos and a half decent groove but that doesn’t save it from sounding more or less as bland as the band playing Saturday nights at The Three Legs in Scunthorpe. Yes, that’s all that’s left of the infamous Camden scene, pub rock. But that’s no surprise, even the top dogs resign themselves to nostalgia when the march of fashion stomps off somewhere else. There is nothing on this album you haven’t heard because, if you could be bothered to read an article about former trendy rock star, you are probably either a die-hard Camdener (currently foaming at the mouth) or could have written this yourself without even listening to the record. Is ‘Dad-Indie’ a genre? Perhaps Carl Barat is its pioneer.

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