All of a sudden these people seem to be everywhere, the latest prey of a music industry dissolving in its own saliva as it ceaselessly hunts the next big thing with a Terminator zeal. The band themselves seem omnipresent, their faces leering from newsstands, their tour list reading like the bible, their songs lying in wait on evening Radio One shows like mantraps looking to snare our ankles.
Rather unfortunate, then, that I’d still be hard-pressed to identify Only You in a police line-up: it’s been looping on my iPod for a week now and I could barely hum you the tune. At a push I’d probably get halfway before it meshed into the White Stripes. Or The Strokes. It’s a shame that the lawyers made the former Xerox Teens change their name: it was rather appropriate.
Oh, there’s nothing wrong with the song as such: indeed, it glides along very nicely for its slender 2.24 running-time. Heck, you’ll probably find yourself dancing to it soon in an awkward, homogenised fashion along with everyone else. And then you’ll forget it. It’s as though the track has been daubed in stealth camouflage: your senses tell you that it’s there, but it leaves no record, no trace or mark, no visceral imprint of any kind. That sound at the 2.15 mark that you thought were the guitars fading away? That’s the sound of a memory failing to be formed, of information entering the brain and leaving again without so much as firing a single neuron.