WHEN I first heard Wild Beasts' debut single, I wasn't sure if the CD was scratched or if Kate Bush and Scooby Doo had produced some strange lovechild that had in turn crawled inside my stereo.
It turned out the promo disc was in fact scratched but after receiving such a polite accompanying letter from frontman Hayden Thorpe, I was determined to track down a blemish-free version - and I'm glad I did.
If Brave Bulging Buoyant Clairvoyants is anything to go by, the British music scene is going to rear its head and applaud this Kendal-born foursome for bringing a fresh new sound to the airwaves.
Out on the Bad Sneakers label from Monday, the Beasts' first offering is going to be, in all fairness, a love or hate thing but with such a catchy melody I would put money on it bringing a smile to your face at the very least.
From humble beginnings as schoolboys strumming guitars in their Kendal bedrooms, these four lads - who are now Leeds-based - have nothing if not determination.
Featuring former Queen Katherine School pupils Hayden Thorpe, 20; Benny Little, 20; Chris Talbot (Bert), 21; and Tom Fleming, 21, the band's beginnings date back to 2002 when 16-year-olds Benny and Hayden sat down together with two guitars and, courtesy of vocalist Hayden, what has grown to be a really notable voice.
The duo originally went by the name of Fauve, the French term for wild beast, but by 2004 they'd got a new name and a new member, having drafted in the drumming skills of friend Chris Talbot, otherwise known as Bert'.
A year ago, after "dabbling and deliberating" and a move to Leeds, Benny, Hayden and Bert secured their fourth and final member, bass guitarist-come-singer Tom Fleming, and after months building up a following in their new home, it looks like their hard work is about to pay off.
He may sound like he's recovering from bronchitis at times but Thorpe's high-pitched singing is strangely endearing. It's rare I love a song the first time I hear it but after one-and-a-half listens of BBBC, I was hooked.
Brave Bulging Buoyant Clairvoyants hits the shelves in CD and 7" single format on Monday, November 20, and you can get it from Circa Records in Kendal or via Amazon. To listen online, visit www.myspace.com/ wildbeasts or check out the video on www.youtube.com.