(Gringo Records, out Fri 15 Feb 2019)

Desperately seeking saucer-eyed waif, GSOI (good sense of irony) who is up for picking mushrooms and staring into the middle distance. Time wasters actively encouraged.

As lonely hearts go, Leeds trio Bilge Pump have it covered. We Love You is for the more discerning (music) lover, the kind disenchanted by so many CBGB-inspired guitar heroes (that’s not to decry the venue, its artists, or those subsequently influenced by its 70s scene) as a seemingly inexhaustible source of inspiration.

Instead, Emlyn Jones, Joe Mask and Neil Turpin cast their nets out wider, to the fringes of rock music, psych, and noise bands, where peely wally reprobates find that they have bonded – finally! – with another over a Walking Seeds Peel Session EP… on original vinyl, of course.

This may suggest esoteric noodling, and … well … there is, but it’s all perfectly fine in the right headspace. Today They Destroyed My House has prowling bass and panicked rhythm changes.¬†The chugging hypnotic groove of The Passion of the Kid¬†evokes a post-punk tension, and Wheel Of You sits at an odd intersection between Kevin Ayers and Pavement, while the locked Trout Mask Replica riffs of GUHAC are complemented by Jones’ self-deprecating assertion that, “it’s lucky I haven’t got a wife / ’cause she wouldn’t stand for this”.

Even if it does get unwieldy and chaotic, like the eight minute freak out at the tail end of Gondwana Girl, it’s worth persevering with. Flaws, as with human beings, are what draw us in, attract us, and keep things interesting. Bilge Pump may not be for keeps, but they’re a nice fling in the meantime.