Following initial success some groups stall. That's what happened to England's dance combo Sub Sub. "Ain't No Love (Ain't No Use)" did exceptionally well in clubs but the group didn't have another ace. So it was back to Manchester to re-tool.
Former Sub Sub members Jimi Goodwin (bass/vocals) and the twins Jez (guitar) and Andy Williams (drums) became the Doves. The collaboration clicked with the group's debut EP "Cedar" being released on October '98. A limited pressing, the EP sold out. It was a good start that garnered the music media's attention. The singles "Sea Song" and "Here It Comes" built momentum. "Lost Souls" was released in October '00. Two years later the Doves delivered "The Last Broadcast." It reached #1 in the UK album chart, while the single "There Goes The Fear," made it to #3.
The B-sides compilation, "Lost Sides," and a DVD entitled Where We're Calling From, containing all the group's videos to date, dropped in '03.
Led by the Top 10 hit "Black And White Town," the album "Some Cities" vaulted to #1 repeating "The Last Broadcast's" success. The band then opened for U2, Oasis and Coldplay on UK dates.
"Kingdom Of Rust," the group's fourth album, arrived in '09. The eleven song set was described by Andy as being "schizophrenic, but... also strangely cohesive."
The Doves have been compared to Radiohead and The Verve, among others. Their debut "Lost Souls" ranges from the dreamy "Sea Song" to the uptempo guitar Rock of "Catch The Sun," the CD's best track. "Cedar Room" is a slow song that revolves around Jez's jangling guitar. Two mid-tempo songs also stand out, "Melody Calls" and "Hear It Comes," with a hypnotic, psudeo-60's drum track. Most of the album stays comfortably mid-tempo, blending pop and Rock.
'02's "The Last Broadcast" is a tuneful, if tame release. The Doves Rock in places but are either unwilling or unable to sustain it. The album has an airy, sparse accessibility with some ear catching tunes like the bouncy "There Goes The Fear." "N.Y." is the album's best track. It has some power before settling into a comfortable mid-tempo.
The Doves often get credit for being sonically adventurous - but that rarely works. "Some Cities" and "Kingdom Of Rust" have their moments but a lot gets lost in the ether.
"Some Cities" opens with the jangling title track that's followed by "Black And White Town" and the bass thumping "Almost Forgotten." It sounds as though the Doves are creating their definitive effort. But habits are hard to break. Songs meander and all the sonic innovation can't bring them home. With "One Of Those Days" and the energetic acoustic number "Someday Soon," the Doves regain their footing. But "Shadows Of Salford," is an affected ballad and the set closer, "Ambition" lacks it. However, "Sky Starts Falling" is a track Sniff & The Tears would have been proud of.
"Kingdom Of Rust's" title track, which relies on a rhythm guitar and a catchy bass, the riff-Rock "Winter Hill" and the hard charging "House Of Mirrors" work. The pensive excursions don't.