This was the third of three records I bought from Salinas records. I loved the Mapmaker record, but was pretty disappointed with the new one from Delay. I'd say Martha is in between the two, but much closer to the Mapmaker side of the spectrum.
Now, that's not to say Martha sounds like Mapmaker at all, they couldn't be further actually. Hailing from the UK, these guys trade in clean, jangle-y guitar that's bouncy and catchy. The alternating boy/girl vocals make for a dynamic mix and allow for some incredible backing harmonies. When the guy is singing, things seem a little faster and more energetic to me. However, when the female vocals take the lead the songs are extremely catchy and the melodies are top notch. It's really the best of both worlds and they remind me of the old Japanese band Cigaretteman a bit.
I'd never really heard of Martha prior to this album, and I really bought it on the strength of 1 song I heard while perusing the Salinas website. It's always a risk buying records by bands you've never heard of before, sometimes you end up wasting money, but sometimes you end with something great like Martha.
Martha - Courting Strong LP: