Reviewed on 20 June 2012
Rated 8 out of 10
Key Track: Key Track: Man On Fire
It’s a shame this album was released in June. Why? The coldest of Australia’s months and a wavering flu do little to complement the summer-encompassing jamboree that is Here. But beggars can’t be choosers and for the 38 minutes that the record lasts, the listener is offered a temporary (and catchy) lapse from winter’s melancholy blues.
Don’t get the wrong impression, the ‘enthusiastic-for-Summer’ sound doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a clumsy attempt to replicate the success of 2009′s Up From Below; depth is not absent from Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zero’s follow-up.
Instead, from the outset of the album, a new driving direction towards the foolishness of life’s concerns is introduced. The opening track, “Man on Fire”, extends as an invitation to the audience to not cower, but alternatively grow in the presence of despair.
Following their runaway 2009 hit “Home” where Jade Castrinos excelled in the spotlight, Here features her on lead vocals just as much as frontman Alex Ebert. Both her solo tracks and the duets construct a heightened dynamic and depth to each composition, countering the monotonous narration of their previous LP.
Unfortunately, at times tracks get repetitive. “Mayla” and “One Love to Another” move beyond being innocent chants of passion to become pieces that should of ended many verses prior. Parts of the record are also drowned in religious overtones, which distracts from the upbeat sound.
Having previously cited seasons as an influence and with confirmation that another, more “celebratory” release will be out before 2013, one can only hope that too much time in the sun won’t lead to sunburn.
Recent Record Reviews
Released through Dew Process, 2014
Everybody wants to feel good, right? Mikhael Paskalev certainly thinks so, gifting fans with What’s Life Without Losers – a record that quashes any excuses not...
6 days ago
Released through Parlophone Records, 2014
Regarded as his heaviest but strongest body of work, Morrissey’s 1992 solo record Your Arsenal makes a comeback this year and will no doubt prompt a wave...
1 week ago
Released through Inner Ear, 2013
Good news out of Greece has been hard to come by in recent times. But maybe, just maybe, The Noise Figures can be that good news....
1 week ago
Released through Peace & Riot (EMI), 2014
Papa Vs Pretty are an exciting young Aussie band: fun, loud, and full of energy. With White Deer Park, their second full-length since the group’s 2011...
4 days ago