1996 album by The Cardigans

Track listing

Your New Cuckoo
Been It
Happy Meal II
Never Recover
Step On Me
Iron Man
Great Divide

After the Life/Emmerdale albums, The Cardigans went for maturity. Nina began her contribution to the band's lyrics, less surreal than Peter's and Magnus', but with a stronger ability to reflect loneliness, despair and nasty broken hearts.

IMHO, the album contains the best songs from The Cardigans, beyond the hit Lovefool (which has some interesting lyrics, by the way), Been It's, Happy Meal II's and the others' lyrics stick to my mind more than the other albums' songs. Free from the strong sound of the previous Life/Emmerdale and the electronic Gran Turismo, classical guitar+bass+drums means more focus to the lyrics and song. In a way, the sixties sound was what made The Cardigans famous, and let them be more personal and hard on this First Band on the Moon or explore new sounds on Gran Turismo.

This is perhaps seen on the album design, always an important thing to consider on their oeuvre. Extremely low quality photos of the band live and a very clean and simple black and white sans serif design and of course the classic sticker of all the albums with a strong single.

In a way, I believe this record will disappoint non-fans, as it perhaps isn't as unique as the others and maybe only the Pink Floyd influences might raise First Band on the Moon above a thousand of similar albums. But it is the album that lets fans know better the band, the more personal side of The Cardigans.

BTW, although Iron Man is a great, great cover, there's a single version, titled Iron Man (First Try) which is even better and is worth tracking down.

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