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Orko - Travel Plans / Alex Kidd's Lonely Planet

Reviewed by Simon on 11th December 2005

Recently the Scottish music scene has seen something of a revival, with copious amounts of both mainstream and underground bands starting to forge names for themselves. Orko, a four piece hailing from Greenock on the west coast are the latest to try to stake their claim while the going is good.

Double a-side single Travel Plans / Alex Kidd’s Lonely Planet is their debut offering, released only on 7" vinyl limited to 300 copies. On first listen it’s easy to pick out the influences - there are nods to everything from Far to Jimmy Eat World by way of Starfighter Pilot era Snow Patrol, although the most obvious comparison would be to early Idlewild.

Indeed, first track Travel Plans is the best track Idlewild never wrote. Starting sedately the song gives way to a chorus which sounds like a live anthem in the making, whilst Steven Mullholland’s accomplished vocals keep the flow going perfectly, especially when combined with those of guest vocalist Orlaith Prendergast in closing flurry 'Pay attention (forgive me I’m leaving)' - words which are sung with such clarity that they truly deserve to be chorused back at venues bigger than most bands could ever aspire to play.

Second track Alex Kidd’s Lonely Planet confirms that Orko are genuine contenders. Between a glorious two pronged vocal attack and some frankly tremendous drumming it sounds superb throughout, and more than justifies it’s inclusion as a double a-side choice as opposed to a b-side. Ending in a hail of distortion it rounds off a consummately professional debut outing.

Criticisms are few and far between, although it has to be said that the songs do sound very similar in places - but then when both are quite so good it’d be rather churlish to complain.

Having recently supported fellow Scots Biffy Clyro in Edinburgh, Orko are a band that deserve your attention. Catch them when they go on tour in 2005, or buy the vinyl before it sells out; either way, you won’t be disappointed.

Rating: 9/10
Website: www.iheartorko.com


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