Archive of ‘Album Reviews’ category
Brisbane band Pigeon have just dropped EP number two called ‘Settle In’.
Having cited The Cat Empire as one of their favourite bands and referred to early days experimenting with hip hop beats via ‘how to’ Youtube guides, its easy to see where Pigeon are coming from on this latest record.
Lacking the ferociousness or intensity of The Cat Empire, Pigeon have opted for the more low-fi electro option, and boy have they nailed it. Underpinned by a range of processed hip hop beats, they have managed to produce an album that due to its multitude of influences is easily accessible to the listener, without compromising any quality.
The two released singles, ‘Curtain Call’ and ‘Two Moon Love’ are the major standout tracks, but the catchiness and stirring summery synth of ‘Climbing Trees’ may see that dropped as a single in the not too distant future.
Take nothing away from remaining tracks, ‘Settle In’ and ‘Crowhurst’, which deliver more suave indie electro but lack the punchiness or intensity of the others to have that same anthemic feel to them. Having said that, they are still quality enough to have you reaching for the iPod to check what songs playing when it shuffles on.
The self-proclaimed electro horn rock outfit have really delivered on the 5-track record with their infectious mix of brass, electro and indie rock shining through in an album that will have you dancing up a storm, coated in sweat, and absolutely loving it.
Matt Corby has returned with his eagerly anticipated new EP ‘Resolution’.
Having already released two singles, that almost everyone has come to hear and love, it only left half the EP in any doubt. And after one listen, that doubt was gone.
Matt Corby has shown that he has a real ability for making brooding, heavy, emotional songs and the Resolution EP continues to highlight this talent. Whilst the EP doesn’t contain songs that are as accessible as his previous hit ‘Brother’, I think Matt Corby has really developed his sound and provided an album of mature substance. Whilst his husky vocals remain a highlight on each of the four tracks, he is no longer reliant on his voice as his main instrument. Instead this new EP sees Matt Corby shine, being propped up fantastically by heavy bellowing beats, catchy rustic guitar patterns and a much more complete and tighter instrumental sound.
My favourite song of the EP is the currently unreleased ‘Lay You Down’, which is underpinned by this eerie violin pattern that just draws you into the full emotion of the song. Again Corby’s vocals are a highlight, but delivered so sparsely that they almost have a greater effect than when they form the lynch pin.
A fantastic brooding EP that is sure to please the die hard Matt Corby fans and draw some new ones in.
If indie pop five piece Tigertown haven’t made a fan out of you yet, their latest EP ‘Wandering Eyes‘ sure will.
The five track ‘Wandering Eyes’ EP is the third from the band who have continued to grow their sound and gone from strength to strength with each release. As soon as the first few notes of the opening track ‘Weary One’ hit your ears, you know that Tigertown are just going to charm you with their delightful harmonies and rustic eclectic beats throughout the EP. And to be frank, that excited me.
Lead single ‘What You Came Here For’ only added to that excitement with the driving collective of beats and soaring vocals, quite rightly drawing praise and plenty of spins on the old radio. ‘Back in Time’ is an equally strong track, that really highlights the poppier side of Tigertown’ music as it delivers a tighter, more intense but equally harmonious sound. ’Wandering Eyes’ delivers a return to a more eclectic folk vibe that satisfies the eardrums with its classic harmonies and mellow beats, before the EP then rounds off softly and delicately with the mellow love ballad ‘Ghost’. It was a charming end for an EP that whilst varied in nature, somehow maintained that quintessentially Tigertown feel that we have grown to love over their three releases.
A slightly interesting fact that struck me about the ‘Wandering Eyes’ EP is that all songs are 3:19 to 3:24 seconds long, which just seemed almost formulated. A strange piece of trivia that goes no further in explaining the quality of Tigertown’s sound, but did draw some intrigue.
Overall, the entire EP just oozes charm, and I can quite confidently say that ‘Wandering Eyes’ will have you swooning to their tunes near uncontrollably, as their gorgeous voices, rustic beats and positive vibe combine to create an EP where almost every song gets stuck in your head. In fact, my only complaint from this charming and quaint little EP is that it is not a full length album – which given the band has two EPs under their belt already, I was desperately hoping for.
Sydney act Nantes have just released their brand new debut album ‘Beingsbeing’ and I will be upfront, based on their previous EP it was very different to what I was expecting from the lads.
Having been a huge fan of the breakthrough track ‘Fly’ and the EP track ‘Charlie’, both more bouncy guitar driven indie rock, it was a bit of a shock to see Beingsbeing have a strong synthetic undertow to it. Ok, so it wasn’t a total shock with the already popular Triple J played singles ‘Avid’, ‘Drones’ and ‘Unsatisfy’, giving some inkling that Nantes were expanding their sound. But it the effectiveness in which the guys had incorporated their synth done so that was the real surprising pleasure.
The album builds on the bands indie rock roots and as mentioned mixes things up a good variation of pop and heavy bass/synth vibes. The surprises were the tunes ‘Alice’, which is a little reminiscent of a Phil Collins number with brooding atmospheric drums and hazy vocals, and Awayke Dream which incorporated some interesting sampling. ‘Beingsbeing’s more predictable poppy tracks included the radio numbers ‘Avid’,‘Drones’, bouncy key number ‘Potrisis’ and my personal favourite the percussion laden ‘Lost Children’. Yet, you did get the impression that somebody had been drinking too much whisky and listening to too much Phil Collins, as throughout the album there was a real reliance on slow churning bass lines and synth overlays, which did give some tracks a bit of a similar sound. I guess I was still pretty surprised at the defection from melodic indie rock the guys had undergone.
After several listens you also cannot help but decide there is an element of melancholic disappointment, or perhaps a stoned punkish anger seething through the album. The happiness of their EP has been replaced by a slightly more intense emotional vibe, perhaps a realisation of the difficulties of cracking the big time. Nonetheless, Nantes have definitely honed in and enhanced their sound and despite the aforementioned emotional intensity ‘Beingsbeing’ is an album that grows on you with every listen.
After causing a real buzz with their two singles ‘In Retrospect’ and ‘Your Words’, Sydney four-piece Battleships have just released a new seven track mini-album called ‘To You’.
‘To You’ is a collection of seven intelligent, atmospheric indie tracks, so good that listening to them is quickly becoming an addiction. There is something about the double guitar, bass, combo that creates this wall of authoritative guitar rock that imprints each Battleships song in your mind. Add the impressive vocal range of Jordan Sturdee and the high powered drumming by Dan McMurray and you understand why you can’t get Battleships out of your head.
Aside from the quality musicianship, the other notable thing about ‘To You’ is that there is no sign of self-indulgence. Having created a strong unique sound, Battleships don’t overdo it, and instead deliver clean cut rock that leaves you wanting more.
Whether it is the nostalgic and woody percussion dominance of ‘Coming Back to You’ or the more delicate stripped back ‘Collision’, each track offers something different. The slightly more upbeat ‘Inside’ provides a more traditional heavy rock sound, and along with the evocative melodies of ‘Coming Back To You’, are notable inclusions. The two singles lifted from the album ‘Your Words’ and ‘In Retrospect’, are clear stand out tracks, but upon multiple listens, it is still difficult to pinpoint a weak point in the track list. The guys in Battleships also mixed and produced the mini-album all by themselves, making the end product even more impressive.
Overall, Battleships mini-album ’To You’ is a fantastic start for the band, atmospheric, deep and delivered with such aplomb. Having just won the chance to play Homebake thanks to Triple J, Battleships are showing a lot of promise, and hopefully have a lot more installments to come.
Briscoe is a six-piece band from Sydney who already caught our attention with the jaw dropping indie single ‘Animal’. Now, Briscoe have just released their 8 track brand spanking new ‘Friends Ago’ EP.
I guess the most appropriate description of Briscoe would be “charming and fun indie without the unnecessary raucousness of so many other bands”. Not to say that Briscoe don’t rock out, one listen to the bouncy baselines of ‘Day Job’ and fast paced new single ‘B.O.T.S’ surely puts that claim to rest. Listening to ‘Seven of You’, its hard not to see some slight folk influences, but the electrified influence of the guitars helps this track plod along and keep that chilled indie vibe. The vocals by Bart Denaro are crystal clear and delivered with the appropriate mix of lethargy and skill to really cash in on the relaxed nature of their sounds. This is perhaps best shown in the minimalist ‘All I Need is A Holiday’. ‘The New Tragedy’ is perhaps one of my favourite tracks of the album purely because of the richness of the backing instrumentation, the way it steadily builds and the mind-bendingly sweet harmonies. In the same way as ‘Break My Word’, there is so much going on, but you aren’t distracted or put off by it. Instead, it provides quite a complete and warming sound for the ears.
Briscoe are the kind of band that are making stripped back indie uber-cool again. Showing shades of Wilco, they steadily build sounds throughout their tracks to create a tapestry of low-fi indie rock that is toe tappingly brilliant. Have a closer inspection of Briscoe and give these guys a good listen, they will be a big thing come 2013.