Royworld – bit of a boring name, isn’t it?

In fact, it’s the kind of name that would put someone off a band. It conjures up images of fat bearded men in their mid-thirties, living in Milton Keynes and making inoffensively dull music. I have no idea if the band members actually fit that description, but their music certainly does.
Man In The Machine is an album of ‘nice’ music. But being nice is bad. ‘Nice’ is the word that people use when they can’t think of any other description. If you introduce someone to your friends and all they can come up with is ‘yeah, he seemed nice…’ then that means your friend has the personality of a goldfish.

Just look at the ‘nice guy’ phenomenon, or Harry Enfield’s ‘Tim Nice-But-Dim’. They’re really not things that you want to be aspiring to, are they? Royworld is the musical equivalent of the nice guy who sits back, being nice, and watches as the girl he loves is swept away by the confident and suave jock, perhaps represented in this analogy by Razorlight.

This CD is the kind that you put on, and then instantly forget about. Nothing but silence-filler. I can’t really pick out many tracks which have any kind of distinguishing, stand out features. Title track ‘Man In The Machine’ is notable for having a really creepy voice in it, but I don’t think that was really the intention.

At times they go for an epic sound similar to Sigur Rós, but inevitably fail miserably. ‘Astronaut’ starts with a glimmer of possibility, which is then cruelly extinguished by horribly synthesised voices, the kind of thing that Air or Björk would go in for during one of their more deranged moments.

So give yourself up to Razorlight’s advances, even though the guilt will set in with the first post–coital cigarette. At least it’ll be more interesting that this album.

Two stars