This album quickly grew on me after a few listens. The other reviewers are absolutely right about it having a depth that you might not notice on the first listen.
My initial reaction was a bit less favorable. First of all, some of the songs sounded a bit samey to me, like maybe they stuck with the same synthesizer effects in each song (which is not really true, in retrospect). Also, I wasn't so sure about them releasing an "ode to music" album, because it's clear in their past albums that they love music. Do they really need to spell it out?
But like I said, the album quickly grew on me. There's no problem with them spelling out their love of music, because of course they're doing it in their classy Saint Etienne way. They've always done a great job of evoking just the right emotions with each song, and this album is no exception. This is not a mere "I (heart) music" on a bumper sticker sort of thing. It's a subtle sermon.
As for it sounding all a bit samey, well, there is a clear focus on catchy dance tracks on this album, and at first listen, it might seem vapid. But nothing is ever vapid with Saint Etienne, is it? This is where the hidden depth of the album comes in. There are little nuances here and there, and of course clever lyrics, and Sarah's wistful delivery of them, that demonstrate one of the messages of the album: music can be meaningful even if it doesn't sound like it at first.
In a way, the message in this album is what I've been wanting to hear from them for a long time. They clearly know a lot about music, and sometimes they're cheeky about it, putting acoustic name-drops in their songs and such. Some musicians take this too far and become arrogant, treating music like an exclusive club. Some musicians go ironic, mocking the clichés of days past. But Saint Etienne never does that, and I love them for it. They have too much respect for the medium and its effect on people. And here they take a stand and come right out and say it: they are music lovers and they want you to love music, too.