Lovejoy's new album is called Everybody Hates Lovejoy…or is that Lovejoy Hates Everybody? On the first track, "Everybody Hates Us and We Don't Care," Richard Preece certainly sings with more venom than you would expect from a mellow-voiced purveyor of sensitive pop music. As on Lovejoy's last album Who Wants To Be a Millionaire, his anger on this first track is directed towards celebrity culture and materialism, and the phoniness they've spawned. He also appropriately sings "I've never really fitted in / and I don't care." That could be Lovejoy's creed – their style of sophisticated, melancholy pop music certainly won't be topping the Billboard charts anytime soon. And even within that niche of music where they fall, they stand out. Several songs on Everybody Hates - particularly "Sid Vicious" and "Nicotine and Love" - elevate tales of lonely and heartbroken people to new heights, by matching perfectly tender melodies with lyrics that efficiently, cleverly capture genuine feelings of hurt and disappointment. The economy of words in Preece's lyrics really stands out on this album. A perfect example is the song "Petrol Stars," with its powerfully terse lyrics. Sing a couplet like "I was listening to the Who / I was dreaming of your shoes" in a quiet whisper filled with longing, as Preece does, and the effect is above description and beyond compare.
While Lovejoy has always essentially been Dick Preece's project, this is the first album he's actually recorded on his own (with only a little help here and there), or at least the first time he hasn't credited the other members of the band. Whether or not that's true, it's undeniable that this record (the band's third) is the most consistent Lovejoy record to date. It's also the most melancholic (if that was even possible), with Dick's vocals a barely audible whisper in each song (which sounds remarkably like David Gedge's voice when he whispers through a couple Cinerama songs). The music is similar to previous Lovejoy records, with an equal amount of soft, strummy guitars and keyboards, as well as a mix between real and electronic drums. Most of the record is rather somber, but a few songs show some life, like "Petrol Stars", "America" and "Sid Vicious", not that the slower songs don't have their own charm, though. I'd say that overall, this is my favorite Lovejoy record yet. --IndiePages
I have waxed lyrical about this little gem before, but "Sid Vicious" is a beautiful song, so finely weighted, so full of hopes and fears. Like the Helen Love tune that may yet appear somewhat further down the page, Joey Ramone gets a reference, along with Sid, and "Steven" (wonder who that could be?) but this is of course a world away from the Ramones' endearingly artless noise, instead being a Wake-like slab of electro-indie-pop with a distinctly human heartbeat. The more I listen to the album as a whole, btw, the more it cements itself in the top ten LPs of the year - no mean achievement for a non-metal release, in the current climate! --Kisschase
Matinée's hot streak continues with a beguiling new cd from Lovejoy that on various tracks recalls a more subdued Saint Etienne, a sleepy Sunday morning Pulp or the sombre genius of early Brian. A top array of sparkly guitar sounds to usher in Spring that includes a GREAT cover of The Windmills' "Drug Autumn"!
The follow-up to “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?” is here at last! Ten new songs from Dick Preece, nine new compositions and one cover of The Windmills “Drug Autumn”. Musically a bit more like “Songs In The Key Of…” than “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?”, lyrically concearned with love, politics, pop culture and music business. As always with Lovejoy it is a lovely release of excellent melodies and lyrics. An early contributor to your album-of-the-year list! --Fraction Discs
Lovejoy are slowly, yet steadily building on a fine history, and seemingly getting better at every juncture. ‘Everybody Hates...’, their third album rides on the coat tails of inclusions on numerous indie compilations, last years single on Unpopular Records, and live dates in England, Spain and Sweden – indie heartlands if ever there were any. Kicking off with ‘Radio Lovejoy’, a thirty second search through the airwaves, scanning white noise and dirty AM receptions for something a little more pure, a little more heartfelt, something more lustrous and luxurious, harmonious and melodious, and boy do you find it. As soon as this album gets a hold you are swamped with saccharine, soothing songs laced with a tinge of desperation and defiance and a substantial array of superbly written semi-pop classics. From ‘Petrol Stars’ with it’s hints of electronica overlain by simple acoustic guitar lines folds into ‘America’ with it’s more threatening rhythm section and darker tones Lovejoy seem to have the spectrum covered already. The whole sound is subtle and understated whilst maintaining a steady steely gaze and an unrelenting hold. It’s not a record to dip in and out of, it’s an album to listen through to as a whole. It’s a record that tells a story from start to finish. Packed full of chime and melody ‘Everybody Hates...’ cannot fail to impress, openly poppy tracks mix with the slightly rockier moments of the instrumental ‘Sandcastles’ and the forceful ‘Sid Vicious’ the whole melting pot thing works so well. That’s not to say that the set is too eclectic or the themes too ephemeral, it all holds together perfectly, the natural glue being a combination of elegant musical direction and an irresistible overall good time feeling to the record, regardless of it’s lyrical content. Easing back down towards the finale ‘Nicotine and Love’ spells out the regrets of a wasted past, lost days and a lost love. It’s a gently menacing acoustic strum that remains one of a stunning records hidden highlights. ‘Because You’re Worth It’ and ‘This Could be an Ending’ close the album in fine style. The former, an electronics dominated ruck with subverse acoustic guitar lines, the latter, a sun kissed, sea breeze blessed slice of almost melancholia. It’s like that feeling of being alone in a crowd, the taste of something special and the belief that one day, maybe one day, things will be perfect. This record is strung together with an irrepressible feel of hopeful optimism, and that in my book is no bad thing at all. All that and a sparkling cover of The Windmills ‘Drug Autumn’, what more could you ask for? You can take your little England, and shove it. This is Lovejoy, and not a mention of rogue-ish antiques dealers. --Friends of the Heroes
I'm imagining an antique radio in a musty room. Everything's in an aged sepia tone. I turn the big wooden knob and the radio crackles to life. Music emanates from it in a technicolour stream. This is… Radio Lovejoy. That's the feeling I get from Lovejoy's latest album. Nostalgia, as if I've been listening to it all my life. This is an album that thumbs its nose at the world. Don't be fooled by the gentle rhythms, minor-chord melancholia and whispered-spoken-sung vocals. It's edgy. It's a protest album. It's a quiet sort of protest album though. Passive defiance rather than aggressive opposition, achieved through the practice of ironic wit and musical charm. Lovejoy aren't very much in favour of 'The Industry', pop charts, and selling out, but I'm only guessing here. "Everybody hates us and we don't care…" The title track epitomises this spirit - Lovejoy are going to go on making the music they want, who cares what the rest of the world thinks. Elsewhere, pretty instrumental 'Sandcastles', with its chiming xylophone notes, chugging beat and clean electric guitar lines morphs into the mildly-anthemic 'Sid Vicious'. Punk Rock's protest idol or just a manufactured fad for acceptance-seeking adolescents? Narcotics and cigarettes feature in two of the track titles. Who says we have to be squeaky clean? The Windmills' 'Drug Autumn' makes an appearance here, tweaked to Lovejoy perfection with the sound of lonely howling wind in the background. 'Nicotine And Love' laments youth wasted on red wine and lost love. 'Petrol Stars' and 'America' are about the superficiality of modern Western culture. The former chronicles the pathos of a failed relationship still struggling to put up appearances, while the latter attacks the hypocrisy and grossly misplaced priorities of today's consumerist society. The album closes, appropriately, with 'This Could Be An Ending'. Through the lovely acoustic guitar picking, it leaves us with a pretty grim vision - "… songs of love and hearts not found" - resisting the gimmick of a happy ending. Yes, this is a tough, cynical album, uncompromising to the end. That's what I admire about it. That, and the time-warp music that those biting words are sung to, like a cinematic soundtrack that carries the scene through… It's about time you discover (or re-discover) Lovejoy... --Peekaboo
The jet-setters. The lounge clubbers. The permanent vacationers. Musically, Richard Preece aka Lovejoy could move easily through their world of cafes, upscale bars, and swanky clubs. His style though is not over the top or kitschy. In fact, while he can move in their world, he does not seem to think much of it. Pretension is not his game. 'Everybody Hates' is the third full length from Lovejoy and a fine follow up to 2002's 'Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.' The strummy guitars, gentle keyboard tones, and whispery smooth vocals that have won us over twice before are all back again and just as pleasant as before. So is that sense of melancholy that seems to permeate, yet not smother, the world of Lovejoy. Stand out tracks include the opener 'Everybody Hates Us and We Don't Care', 'Petrol Stars', the almost upbeat 'Sid Vicious', and the quite sombre 'Nicotince and Love'. The album also includes a lovely cover version of the Windmills 'Drug Autumn.' The whole album is quite solid and the songs flow gently from one to another. Listening to Lovejoy is a warm, soothing, luxurious, reflective, sombre but not sad experience. Time always seems to flow by effortlessly when Lovejoy is in the room. So pour yourself a nice drink and relax a bit. After all, it's not like you have anything to do today that can't be done tomorrow.... --Pennyblack Magazine
All new album from fantastic Lovejoy! It’s the third album and it fits perfect together with the other two. As before it sounds more British than any other are able to do. The melancholy that surrounds this album is loveable in any sense, because this is melancholy at its best – never far away from its closest friend tears and laughter. Once again the cover art goes very well with the music and the title is one that never will be forgotten.
--Songs I Wish I Had Written
The poor lambs, Lovejoy are clearly Millwall fans. ‘Everyone Hates…’ is the second album from these Brighton-based pop troubadours, and easily as swoonsome as the classic ‘Everyone Wants To Be A Millionnaire, for if there are another band that can do the mournful pop anthem better than Lovejoy, then I’m a Scunthorpe United fan. And you know that’ll never happen. All the hallmarks of a classic Lovejoy release are here, chiming, shimmering guitars, doleful lyrics, deadbeat disco beats, and the obligatory mention of Morrissey in the album’s centrepiece, ‘Sid Vicious’. What’s more there’s a cracking cover of The Windmills’ ‘Drug Autumn’. The fact that this album was recorded and released over two years matters not, and it’s even given time for Richard Preece to sing a cheery song! ‘Because You’re Worth It’ comes on like Power, Corruption and Lies- era New Order, and is chirpy in the way that I suppose Tony Hancock raised a smile or two. But the fact remains that no other band I can think of are making such wonderful depressed pop music. I’m sure Preece is a scream really, but as long as he carries on crying into his breakfast, then I’ll be happysad. --Tasty