“I’m Don Quixote in a fetching onesie,” sings Andrew “Tiny” Wood on God’s Gift. It’s one of many lyrical zingers on Real Britannia, Ultrasound’s third album and the second since they reformed in 2010 after an 11-year absence.
The crashing chords and soaring chorus of single Kon-Tiki would not sound out of place on a 90s Indie Anthems CD, while Asylum has a tinge of Inspiral Carpets’s This is How it Feels.
But while there is plenty of residue of their late-90s heyday, Ultrasound display an intriguing range of influences that set them apart from their contemporaries. The Ramones ramalama of Soul Girl – written and sung by bassist Vanessa Wilson – leads to a Neu!-ish motorik plateau, while the desert twangs of No Man’s Land evolve into a fuzz guitar and jazz flute workout. Most audacious is the closing track, Blue Remembered Hills, a 20-minute-long prog epic that weaves several mini-songs together like the second side of Abbey Road.