Dry the River
Dry the River take their music so seriously, even Sting would giggle. The debut from this London five-piece, who've gotten loads of Mumford & Sons comparisons, shouts "We're intense!" at every moment – especially in the trembling falsetto of former choirboy Peter Liddle. He crams his tales of spiritual torment with biblical and agrarian imagery (oxen, a woodcutter) as the music, played in shifting rhythms, rises like – well, it can't rise because it's always at a full-on peak, especially when joined by the group's violinist, who is, alas, classically trained. It's like a Portlandia satire of the world's most studious band.
• Photos: Random Notes