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Solid sophomore album from the highly touted female quartet......
on 15 February 2014
This album has had (very) mixed reviews and it's taken some time for it to sink in with me since I think even it's admirer's would admit it is hardly packed with hooks! However I've found it to be a definite grower that can be summed up as; "bass heavy post-punk with wispy shoe-gazer vocals". The post-punk bit I like being a real fan of the genre and especially those late70's/early 80's bands that inspired by reggae pushed the bass to the fore of their sound (think 'PiL', 'Delta 5', 'Au Pairs', 'Slits', 'Young Marble Giants', 'Joy Division', 'A Certain Ratio', 23 Skidoo', 'The Fall' and so on). The bass driven grooves are embellished with flecks of guitar and synth with memorable synth-riffing on the single, "Biggy". The vocals are more problematic being ethereal and intangible in the main, just like the early 90's shoe-gazer bands, thereby not really doing the music justice. Nevertheless the best track (by far) hints at a solution to the vocal problem, "Disco//Very" which contains excellent chanted, slightly discordant vocal harmonies and a taut, moody groove --- more of this sort of thing in the future would be welcome.
Therefore a solid sophomore album; a slight improvement over their 1st in my opinion despite the manifest lack of true originality (hard to achieve these days!) and it is somewhat brave (or foolish in this Spotify-age) to put out an album that is so inaccessible without considerable effort on the part of the listener.