The wealth of riffs is remarkable, like an encyclopaedia of popular music grew legs and formed a band. Evoking memories of My Bloody Valentine, The Sundays, James, The Beach Boys and plenty more, the whole thing whizzes past like a raucous carnival.
The robot-warfare-in-a-tumble-dryer production deployed on ‘Feel’ delivers a squelchy, whirling tornado of looped vocals and huge crescendos, while the delicate, lulling confessional ‘Eyes Off You’ occupies a sparse soundscape not dissimilar to James Blake.
The sweeping electronica is present once again, with synth swirls and layered harmonies all over the place. ‘It’s Alright Now’ skitters around with Jack Steadman’s tight-trousered yelp cooing away throughout, while long-time collaborator Lucy Rose lends vocals to several tracks.
However, it is Blackpool singer-songwriter Rae Morris who guests on the rather magical ‘Luna’ (video below), a track which ensures the second half of the album matches the impressive pace of the first. The plastic string sounds that jut in and around the chorus cannot detract from the fabulously heady Middle Eastern melody that underpins the track.
BBC’s ambition was there for all to hear on their last record, but it is with ‘So Long, See You Tomorrow’ that they have fully realised it. What could so nearly have been overbearing or desperate to be loved is, in actual fact, sincerely captivating and euphorically playful.
Words: Gareth James
- - -
- - -