Crack in the Road

Having dropped their second album back in February, it’s not hard to see why Northern Automatic Music flew under a lot of radars.

After all, a shoegaze album coming a matter of days after a lot of people set to work wearing down the grooves in their freshly pressed copies of mbv was never going to get the attention it deserved.

But yeah, the name Panda Riot would probably make you run to the hills anyway.

Which is a shame because Panda Riot have put together a much more thoughtful set of songs than their name suggests – and a far more modern collection of tracks than their forebearers managed.

Lead single Black Pyramids is case in point: whilst the first two minutes sounds suspiciously like Loveless, it suddenly drops the wash of guitar and drum away to reveal that it’s all in the context of a fully-fledged pop song. That’s how they seem to work: well crafted instrumentation in a strong pop-framework, from the brilliantly produced moment when the initial guitar kicks in in Mtwn Glass to the not-just-a-minute-of-filler-noise instrumentals Encrypted Wilderness and Golden Age.

At any rate, they’ve just announced that 300 copies of the album are to be pressed on to vinyl, designed in the style of old Folkway records from the mid-20th century and sold online.

Give it a listen/buy a copy from the player below.