The Bravery The Sun and the Moon (Island) After the Bravery surfed the new wave wake created by the Killers a couple of years back with their self-titled debut, opinions on the New York five-piece quickly polarised into two camps: either they were an underrated act deserving of more recognition or they were shameless opportunists cashing in on a trend for which they had no real passion. Their second album is unlikely to sway those of either persuasion, but it's a step forward. Produced by Brendan O'Brien - whose long and varied list of credits include works by Pearl Jam, Rage Against the Machine, Bruce Springsteen and Incubus - the album benefits from bigger and slicker production, and a greater range of instrumentation, such as the strings employed on balladic closer The Ocean. Like its predecessor, The Sun and the Moon borrows liberally from a range of 1980s luminaries, with the Cure and Duran Duran being the most obvious references, but veers more towards pop with a series of upbeat, electronically tinged rock tracks. It's light years away from the intelligence and uber-coolness of, say, LCD Soundsystem, but it's a lot of fun. Jaunty opener Believe sounds like the Killers doing Kaiser Chiefs, complete with 'ooh-ooh-ooh'-laced chorus, while Bad Sun and Time Won't Let Me Go are similarly buoyant chunks of summery guitar pop. Frontman Sam Endicott overdoes the emotional turmoil cliches a tad on Every Word is a Knife in My Ear and Split Me Wide Open, but there's no escaping the irony that this all sounds more like the expected Killers' second album than Sam's Town.