Sometimes when I first get ahold of a new album the first thing I do is jump to the final cut and hit PLAY. I find that if the artist has something to say, it’s often summated in the album’s last song. Other times, the final cut is where the band or musician in question drops the more experimental, free-form, discursive track. Those tracks tend to be my favorites. “Sea Of Tranquility” by Wild Swans, for example, or the aforementioned “Drown” on the Singles soundtrack, or “We Float” on PJ Harvey’s Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea, just to name three completely off-the-cuff examples.
As it happens, that’s the first thing I did on the new album by Los Campesinos!, Hold On Now, Youngster. I happen to be one of the throng of admirers of last year’s Sticking Fingers Into Sockets EP, so I expected to like the new one. So far I love it. But I’ve only really gotten as far as the final cut. “2007, The Year Punk Broke (My Heart)” contains the upbeat jingly poppiness I expect from a Los Campesinos! effort, but it’s different enough to qualify as a stellar album closer. It’s got that requisite build and that climactic finale feel. If I get around to back-tracking through the rest of the album and find that I hate it, I’ll be sure to post an update. But I don’t think that’ll happen.