Pete Green - Platform Zero EP

Lostmusic LMR 003, 7" vinyl only (MP3s available with purchase of vinyl), released September 2008

Pete Green has been playing his band of twee acoustic indie rock (or "twock" as he would call it) for some time. With the release of "Everything I Do Is Gonna Be Sparkly" last year, it showed a lot of promise and also the quirky songwriting style that Pete had, along with already established favourites such as his infamous Myspace song (which I can't repeat here, it's got swear words and all that). Having seen him live a few times and enjoying the songs he plays, I was intrigued to see just how songs that have been part of his live set would turn out on record - namely this one.

"Platform Zero" is available on the Lostmusic label, and like all small indie labels, great care and attention is paid to the presentation of the 7" vinyl. The vinyl itself is a nice hefty slab, with the centre inserts on both sides being very pretty. You also get an insert explaining Platform Zero (based on the platform zero in Stockport, train buffs) and also a piece of paper which explains that you can claim free MP3 versions of the songs on the EP you've purchased, which is a nice touch so you can have them on your portable player, and a reward for the EP. The cover art has a hand drawn picture of Stockport's platform zero on the front, and one of Pete playing live on the back, based on some photographs, which both work well and give it that really nice feel.

So that's all very nice, but what about the four songs, I hear you ask? Well, you'll be suitably impressed to be honest. If indie acoustic pop goodness if what you're after, you'll get it here, and in abundance too. Starting off with "I'm Gonna Stay With Her", which is a song about how some people go off backpacking around the world and then bore you to tears with their stories when they get back, but how instead you can just choose to stay at home with your loved one. The words are true, and the last part with Pete just getting out the "I'm gonna stay with.." then ending with the last line with the "her" at the end just builds up the crescendo to the end rather nicely. "Happy Being Me", on the other hand, is twee as they come. It explains a little of how he used to copy the hairstyles of Morrissey and Robert Smith (in fact I copied Morrissey too so I can relate to that one) and then how in later life you realise that you're actually much happier being yourself, discussing with your friend down the pub whilst watching the FA Cup on telly, as the song goes. It's a nice gentle lilting guitar throughout and you can really feel that it's just a song for many of us the same age as Pete (that'll be me then!)

Side two has for me the best track of the EP, and a live favourite, "Best British Band Supported By Shockwaves". It explains how like most of us, he gave up buying the NME because it sold out, and how its awards got sponsored, including one for the best British Band by a certain haircare product, and indeed in years to come how the lead singer from the Klaxons needs to explain to his children that he once won that award (with Pete quipping in between the chorus near the end "Even better if he's bald!"). With producer Pete Bowers also belting out shouting of "Shockwaves!" during the chorus, it really works surprisingly well on record as well as live, with some lovely guitar playing. "Let It Go By" closes the EP, and it explains how things may seem so bad but if you just let things go, something nicer will happen soon. Pete describes this as his favourite song, and I can tell why, there's so much happiness in his voice when he sings it. So what if the football is rubbish (especially Grimsby Town, Pete's team!) and indeed if you miss your train? Contrast that with a lovely beer down the pub and it all doesn't seem so bad, and with twee xylophone and his girlfriend on backing vocal, it just adds to the cuteness. Awww.

So there you have it, four excellent tracks which should tell you all what Pete is about and just how good it sounds. By all means listen to the EP online, and I hope that'll convince you to part with your hard earned cash, because believe me, like a certain other hair care product, it's so worth it.

Warren's rating: 89%