Cymbals' debut album is very difficult to describe. It is very reminiscent of 1980s pop music, but the production is unmistakably modern. They remind me of a cross between M83 and David Bowie, if that makes any sense? I have decided to describe the journey through the album, rather than giving an overall impression of it since the songs all sound very different.
The opening track (Winter '98) is a darker track, rich with dense synths and french lyrics. It steadily build before bursting into a climactic finale and is definitely one of the stand out tracks. The next three songs are more traditional verse/chorus songs with a very retro feel and some devilishly creative lyrics. Track 5 (5%) is the weakest track in opinion, although the album quickly dips into a short ambient reprise with track 6 before launching into track 7 (Like an Animal). This track is a long, dance-floor orientated piece that is probably a bit more accessible to the general public. Tracks 8 and 9 (Erosion/This City) are my favourites on the album. 'Erosion' is a brilliantly inventive pop piece with a fantastic finale, while 'This City' a more mellow and chilled out track. The album slowly dwindles down via the final two tracks. By the end, you are very tempted to press play and start the whole cycle again.
Apart from a few weaker tracks, the album is a full of quality and creativity. It's remarkably unique as well, leaving me very little to compare it to. My advice would be to preview the following tracks and see what you think: 'Winter '98', 'Empty Space', 'Erosion' and 'This City'. Enjoy!
There's an argument being made, and has been made for years, that no music is new. To be fair it never has been. Sex Pistols ripped off The Stooges; Beach Boys ripped off Chuck Berry; and Elvis ripped off every black musician he could. The problem with music now is that, whilst re-working ideas can produce new ones, a lot of bands and albums feel too eclectic for their own good. Unluckily, this is the case with CYMBALS's latest effort The Age of Fracture.
I'm not trying to condemn this album before it's even begun. There are some really good songs on here. “The Natural World” is a brilliant piece of mournful indie-disco; the perfect song for dancing alone on a sticky, empty dance floor to. “You Are” has an echoey guitar and sharp drum that underline what is, for the first few minutes at least, a really good piece of pop.