(Ramjet Records )
The second album from [bilby] is slightly more polished than the debut Length Of A String, yet retains its raw edges and broken beauty. Slightly dreamy, but not without some narky turns of phrase, Life In The Slow Lane lane meanders through Melbourne life ('Collingwood') to the faux country twang of 'Clocks' and the ragged politics of 'Lament'.
Album two from the side-project of Melbourne's Bidston Moss, "Life In The Slow Lane" seems an apt adage for this release. Whilst their debut release contained sizable chucks of Bidston Moss' twee pop sound (not to mention several actual BM songs), this release has turns radically down towards an alt-country twang with a far more languid pace to it all. In some ways taking a musical cue from the likes of fellow Melbournites Wagons, Bilby plod through a languid pace that whilst may be discarded at first glance, offers a nice subtle timbre of mellow pop on a return listen. Such pop gems as the opener "Collingwood" are appreciated on multiple listens, with the cheeky analysis of the Melbourne music scene (and the new-rock scene) coming through with "Deirdre says turn it down/rock n roll is losing ground/not in Collingwood". The pace stays slow and languid until the gentle country/rockabilly leanings in the ballad "Clocks". As usual the combination of Beth/Chris from Bidston Moss on vocals adds that extra bit of sweetness to the tracks, whilst Bilby's frontman Mung does lays down his guitarwork amicably, albeit seemingly from behind the scenes in places. The almost rap of "Red Wedge" is great and sets a slightly different tone to the rest of the album. A fuller and differentiated album compared to their debut, Bilby now seems more like a band in their own right rather than a genre re-branding of the contributor's mainstay musical activities. If life in the slow lane is generally associated with the tedium of antiquity, Bilby prove otherwise with a delectable album that would agree very well with those who appreciate a good dosage of country-tinged indie pop. Nice. - Jaz, Oz Music Project