Male Bonding - Endless Now

Deftly crafted slacker opus
Male Bonding - Endless Now
When Male Bonding released their debut ‘Nothing Hurts’ last year, we all breathed a sigh of relief. Marred by a succession of disingenuous, stadium-sized tripe, British guitar music was getting a bad press and it needed someone to save it from drowning in a sea of mediocrity. Then Dalston trio Male Bonding came along and pulled it from the wreckage. Hurtling along at a supersonic speed, their hyperactive punk ditties immortalised the sound of youthful irreverence. But they appear to have calmed down a bit for this album, choosing to focus their energy instead on the art of songwriting itself.

As slapdash torrents give way to sinuous melodies and dextrous song structures suggest a newfound sense of confidence, there’s more time to brood and less inclination to mosh. ‘The Saddle’ is a brave attempt at pared down, acoustic simplicity. Lyrics are more pronounced (take opener ‘Tame The Sun’ for example); John’s vocals are no longer obscured by those requisite gusts of noise. ‘Seems To Notice’ and ‘Channelling Your Fears’ shimmer with an almost poppunk sheen and a bigger sound.

Recorded at Dreamland Studios in Woodstock and produced by John Agnello of Dinosaur Jr fame, fans looking for a haphazard exercise in DIY should revisit the band’s earlier effort, but will nonetheless be greatly rewarded by this deftly crafted slacker opus.

7/10

Words by APRIL WELSH

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