This is not the record for orchestral pop apologists who fall back on nebulous descriptors like "texture" to compensate for the lack of a pulse. Which is not to suggest that Future of the Left's second LP, Travels With Myself and Another, isn't an amazingly executed, richly nuanced rock album. It's just that its layers combine to form a Hummer driving into your chest. Cranky Welshman Andy Falkous sits in the top tier of the "good things that happened to rock music in the 00s" pyramid. With the distinctively mean lyrics and vocals of his previous band Mclusky, and now carrying the torch onward with Future of the Left, he's crafted a unique persona for himself: an extremely misanthropic, crude, sarcastic, violent jerk that you'd still want to hang out with. He's gotten away with it, both by rocking exceptionally hard (like Jesus Lizard hard, such a shame that his bands came after Beavis & Butthead) and having a perverse, but nimble wit. On Future of the Left's first record, that destructive jest was partnered with a synth-dominated instrumental palette. The pulverizing riffs of old are now very much back.