Scottish singer Aidan Moffat and guitarist Malcolm Middleton formed tell-you-my-life-story outfit Arab Strap in 1995 and have produced four attention-grabbing albums since. Appreciated for their vitriolic lyrics, darkness and no-holds-barred reality checks, the four-piece, with Gary Miller on bass and David Gow on drums, have established a loyal fan base in Britain where they have toured extensively. This is progressive British rock weaving the home truths of socialist rockers before them (minus the slogans) with the gloom - and in some cases sound - of Nick Cave. This is not so much 'get up and fight', than talk late into the night about life's hardship, regrets and unfairness. Tracks such as Haunt Me, Turbulence, Screaming In The Trees and Last Orders give an inkling to the maelstrom of angst and discontent that this quartet can unleash. Despite an electro-infusion, which veers occasionally towards disco, The Red Thread, like its predecessors, can hardly be described as upbeat. But that is precisely what makes this band so powerful. They can move from detached observation in the pub one minute to the desperate scramble to find a smokable cigarette butt in the bottom of the ashtray the next. And they do it well. There are moments of poetry, but don't expect them to jump out at you. Like many a drunken heart-to-heart, it takes a little coaxing.