nominee number six.
paragon "the long road" (no dough)
previously hailed by none other than me as being the best album to ever come out of battersea by a country (or should that be leafy inner-ish city) mile, paragon's "the long road" is apparently a culmination of the duo's work over some years trying to carve a niche for themselves on the uk scene - i think the idea was that they could now pursue other projects, having finally put this distillation of their ideas and philosophy into all good record shops (and hmv, ho ho), although the response to "the long road" may have been sufficiently positive to keep them and their "no dough" label rolling for a little longer... it may be that the lengthy gestation period for their debut, honed from a half-decade or more of work under the paragon name and others - explains how filler-free this album is, as it jumps from do-not-mess hard ("you're making me laugh") through to righteous and conscious (especially the excellent "hard to believe"), throwing up new classics like "anthem" and "16 bars is not enough". with another fantastic local discovery, psychic phenomena, having recently emerged from the equally unlikely hotspot of clapham, there is a rather encouraging trend going on in trustafarian south london right about now. it is i hope a salutary warning to the plummy-voiced sloanes, the chisel-jawed rugby players, the drinking song-carousing oxbridge rowers, the sports car-owning ted bakerites with their old college paraphernalia, the leeches that lunch in the fine line and the slug and lettuce, the parasites who have turned wandsworth into a tory stronghold, the prada and dolce & gabbana set, the people who actually buy dido and keane records, and all at foxtons, that their time may soon come. until it does, i thoroughly recommend some overlooked independent music which comes from the same rainsoaked pavements that we do, and this little treasure will fit the bill.