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November 2019

The Xcerts - Hold On To Your Heart

★★★★★
The Xcerts - Hold On To Your Heart
Published: 2:53 pm, January 17, 2018

This band deserves to be one of the biggest in the world.

Label: Raygun Records
Released: 19th January 2018
Rating: ★★★★★

A little over halfway through their fourth album, The Xcerts usher in the song ‘Drive Me Wild’ with a saxophone solo – no, we’re not talking a ska-punk parp of brass, we’re talking full-on ‘Careless Whisper’-level bombastic sax. It’s testament to the bold and brilliant leaps that the Scottish three-piece take on ‘Hold On To Your Heart’ and boy, does it pay off handsomely.

Nearly a decade on from cementing their reputation for massive heartstring-yanking choruses with their debut album ‘In The Cold Wind We Smile’, The Xcerts have crafted a sound which is unmistakably their own. There’s plenty of indulgent nods to heartland rock influence, but its vibrancy steers the ship well clear of straying into placid waters.

With a poignant flourish of piano and Murray Macleod’s warm brogue on ‘The Dark’, the following 32 minutes sparkle with charm, colour and cool. The one-two punch of ‘Daydream’ and ‘Feels Like Falling In Love’ will give you that fizzy feeling of your gut, with youthful abandon pulsing through their choruses.

On the flipside, ‘Show Me Beautiful’ and the arena stomp of ‘Hold On To Your Heart’’s title track show a more considered approach to this new synth-laden sound. There’s still some wonderful places the trio can take this, and that just makes this record even more of an exciting listen.

After attaining this level of power-pop perfection, this band deserves to be one of the biggest in the world right now. Try with all your might; there’s no use holding on to your heart – The Xcerts will only steal it. Danny Randon

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