Review Roundup

23 Jun

Wyes Blood ‘Titanic Rising’

Pointing out the cinematic quality of an album with a song called ‘Movies’ may be a little predictable but it’s not just in this obvious sense that Wyes Blood invites the metaphor. There is something in the soaring ambition, the evocative imagery and the timeless romanticism that recalls a bygone era of Hollywood. YouTube is already bursting with fanmade videos, setting these songs to classic scenes from the likes of Lolita and Twin Peaks. one of the impressive things about ‘Titanic Rising’ is how Wyes Blood marries this widescreen scope with a very personal, imaginative perspective. Throughout the album she explores the depths of her imagination, never settling on an easy image or melody, always seeking out the mysterious ambiguities. Harmonies swell, melodies burst open, every sound is delicately arranged by the best young producer in the business, Jonathan Rado (with some help from The Lemon Twigs). ‘Titanic Rising’ is unquestionably one of the most beautiful albums of 2019

8.5/10

Honeyblood ‘In Plain Sight’

Honeyblood lean towards their softer, melodic instincts on new album ‘In Plain Sight’, an assured return to form after the disappointingly clunky ‘Babes Never Die’. Album opener ‘She’s a Nightmare’ is an early indication of this, with its orchestral flourishes and carefully layered production complimenting a sweet melody masquerading as something sinister. Lead single ‘Third Degree’ is the catchiest thing Honeyblood have written since their run of early singles like ‘Bud’ and ‘Killer Bangs’, pairing a Phil Spector beat with punk rock guitars. This is certainly nothing new but when it sounds this good few will complain.

7.5/10

We Are Scientists ‘Megaplex’

If you announce an anniversary tour for your debut a matter of weeks after releasing your latest album then you know something has gone pretty wrong – which is exactly the position We Are Scientists have landed in. This move is detrememntal on a couple of levels. Not only does it move focus away from ‘Megaplex’, the band’s slick new synth pop album, but it also highlights this record’s inadequacies by reminding people what was so charming about 2005’s ‘With Love and Squalor’. That record bristled with a nervous energy that offset clean, sharp guitar hooks with disco groves. In contrast, ‘Megaplex’ is calm, settled and almost totally lacking in any kind of musical or lyrical tension. It also lacks in WAS’s most notable trait: humour. It exists but We Are Scientists have already forgotten about it and soon so will you.

5/10

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