A.V. Club Most Read

News Newswire Great Job, Internet!
TV Club All Reviews What's On Tonight
Video All Video A.V. Undercover A.V. Cocktail Club Film Club
Reviews All Reviews Film TV Music Books
Features All Features Wiki Wormhole AVQ&A
Sections Film Tv Music Food Comedy Books Games Aux
Our Company About Us Contact Advertise Privacy Policy Careers RSS
Onion Inc. Sites The Onion The A.V. Club ClickHole Onion Studios

The Minders: Golden Street

Album: Golden Street
Label: spinART

Community Grade

  • A
  • A-
  • B+
  • B
  • B-
  • C+
  • C
  • C-
  • D+
  • D
  • D-
  • F

Your Grade


Of the many bands associated with—or, if recent trends prevail, disassociated with—the Elephant 6 collective, The Minders set itself apart with a commitment to layered simplicity and unabashed retro-mindedness. The group's 1998 album Hooray For Tuesday sounds like a lost artifact from the British Invasion, and a glorious one at that. The Minders later disbanded, with frontman Martyn Leaper and cohort Rebecca Cole relocating to Portland and recruiting new musicians. Golden Street is the first full-length product of the second-phase Minders, and for long stretches, it sounds like the work of a different (albeit no less gifted) band. The eponymous album-opener, a sort of envious "Penny Lane," starts Golden Street off on an anthemic note, but then trails off in a peculiar coda that suggests what subsequent tracks confirm: Leaper has discovered ambition with a capital A, the bane of many great pop bands. Nevertheless, Leaper, who plays most of the instruments himself, handles his new ambition fairly well for most of the album, supplying a catchy track like "Give Me Strength" for every distorted vocal/harpsichord ballad like "Light." If not quite the instant knockout of Hooray, Golden Street rarely displeases. Retaining the "baa ba-ba-ba" harmonies of its predecessor but placing them in odd settings, Golden Street may feature the sound of a band in transition, but every act should wish its growing pains sounded so promising.