No band were more fun in the 90s than Supergrass, not only did the band capture perfectly the exuberance and sheer insanity of loving life they were also maybe the greatest singles band of the era, like if all the members of ABBA had mutton chops (i.e.: perfection). In fact, stop reading this now, go and listen to the ‘Supergrass Is 10‘ best-of, I’ll be here when you come back, don’t worry…
The problem is that now lead singer Coombes feels he has to stress just how mature he is now, his second solo album couldn’t be more mature if it were a vintage cheddar left to age for 18 months, and of course fun just isn’t what mature people do, is it? There isn’t a bad song on ‘Matador’, but nor is there a song that burrows itself in the brain like his former band’s best did: I’ve been listening to this fucker since January and couldn’t tell you the name of any of the songs without checking the track listing. In my dreams Coombes solo music would unfettered insanity, he’d exhibit kaleidoscopic musical ingenuity after being let lose from the strains Supergrass imposed upon him, instead we get rather pallid music that- brilliant as it occasionally is- can’t help but ever so slightly underwhelm.
‘Fun’ Fact: At the height of their success, Steven Spielberg approached Supergrass with the idea of creating a Monkees style TV show starring the band. Yes, I know this is one of those facts that everybody knows, comparably shocking to revealing how Big Mo off EastEnders is Gary Oldman’s sister, but it bears repeating just so we can all consider how awesome that would have been.
So wait, do you actually like that album?? Absolutely! It’s not perfect but ‘The English Ruse‘ is just one example of the heights it scales