Filmed on location in Ibiza, Liverpool, London and live at the V Festival, Powder charts the rise of an exciting new band.

But nothing rings true about Mark Elliott's feature bow, Powder, which has been adapted by Kevin Sampson from his own novel about a Merseyside musician struggling to deal with the traumas that have prevented his band from hitting the big time.

Bearing in mind Sampson's success as a writer and Elliott's reputation as an editor, this is a sloppily structured and ponderously self-absorbed melodrama that is stuffed with preening performances and saddled with dialogue that makes Hollyoaks sound like Ibsen.

Liam Boyle is the lead singer of The Grams, an indie combo who have been somewhat overshadowed by the meteoric rise of Al Weaver, a onetime acolyte who was content to open for Boyle before he stole one of his unfinished songs and scored a massive hit.

Now, as seedy online journalist Stephen Walters and American promoter Tim Dantay dance to Weaver's tune, Boyle wrestles with the memory of watching stepfather Tony Pitts burn the guitar bought by his dead dad and the pain of being unable to complete the song that can make sense of his feelings.

Gal pal Vinette Robinson, manager Alfie Allen and bandmates Oliver Lee, Joe Edwards and Greg Mighall are prepared to give Boyle all the space he needs.

But he puts pressure on himself by agreeing to cut a record for fledgling label boss Jefferson Hall and his adoring partner Jo Woodcock and finds himself having to work with inexperienced engineer Christian Foster after Weaver lures ace producer Neil Bell away on his American tour.

The sessions stall and Boyle announces that he has to fly to Ibiza to commune with the only person who really understands him.

However, onetime neighbour Ralf Little has changed considerably since he used to encourage the young Boyle to learn his chords and now lives as a dreadlocked dropout in a hilltop tent.

Nevertheless, he brews him a potion to soothe his tormented mind and Boyle announces that he will be ready to perform at the V Festival once he has confronted Pitts and made peace with his estranged mother, Sharon Byatt.

While Boyle is moping between London, Liverpool and the Balearics, Weaver storms back across the Atlantic after a Stateside humiliation to attempt to relaunch his faltering career with a dance remix of his greatest hit.

Meanwhile, Allen has developed a crush on Woodcock, who only has eyes for Hall and drowns herself on overhearing that he thinks of her solely as a baby sister.

Allen decides to quit the music business and Boyle makes a half-hearted effort to coax him back before he has an on-camera showdown with the winegum-chomping Walters that sets the record straight about both his reasons for forming the band and Weaver's overnight success.

With his demons exorcised, Boyle is now free to devote himself to his swan song and his long-postponed romance with Robinson.

As Kevin Sampson himself admitted in a recent article in The Guardian, film-makers have a lousy track record when it comes to movies about rock bands and, sadly, this dismal muddle must now take its place alongside Brian Gibson's Broken Glass (1980) and Still Crazy (1998) in the BritPop Hall of Shame.

The soundtrack composed by Starsailor's James Walsh is disappointingly moderate considering The Grams's Facebook page lists Big Star, Joy Division, The Verve, Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley and Radiohead as the group's influences.

But what makes this so resistible is the surfeit of dead-end sub-plots and unsympathetic secondary characters.

The performances are also pretty shambolic, with Liam Boyle aiming for moody and meaningful and hitting mopey and mundane, while Al Weaver, Tim Dantay and Stephen Walters resort to shameless mugging that is often as embarrassing as the Ibiza sequence in which waitress Camilla Roholm is gratuitously required to remove her top while guiding Boyle to Little's woodland hideaway.