Successful rock groups are like successful footballers. They burst onto the scene as fresh-faced whippersnappers, here to banish the old guard and claim the future as theirs.
Then before you know it, they are the old guard, people are referring to them as veterans and suddenly there’s a new kid on the block ready to send them scampering to the scrapheap.
Stereophonics are slightly different. Unlike, for example, Arctic Monkeys or Manic Street Preachers, they only seemed to be the young whippersnappers for one album, in their case 1997’s Word Gets Around. They’ve felt like veterans since their second record.
Keep The Village Alive is their ninth, and by now they’ve built up an audience big enough to sell 300,000 copies of 2013’s Graffiti on the Train – not bad this far down the line.
Keep The Village Alive, a sturdy collection of guitar rock that is neither no more nor no less what you would expect from Kelly Jones and co, should keep that fanbase happy. Single C’est La Vie might even bring in some new followers, too.
Like this? Try these: Oasis, Don’t Believe The Truth; Manic Street Preachers, Everything Must Go
By Andrew Greenhalgh