A masterful debut from the enigmatic superstar-in-waiting...

Beginning as a collection of demos recorded in Amber Bain’s bedroom, these stories of her recent breakup appear as tales straight from her diary as everything is laid bare. It’s a personal and vulnerable set of stories but the confident delivery and purring pop rushes see the melancholic messages act as an invitation to dance.

Lifelong influences like The Beach Boys, Bon Iver and James Blake are clear throughout, Amber Bain’s harmonies and sampling methods, a constant feature of The Japanese House sound, are executed perfectly here.

Meanwhile the song structuring, something Bain has always focused on, is clear and distinct. The verses offering a coherent narrative, the choruses acting as an opportunity for Amber to release any remaining pain, angst or energies atop of synth-rushes and pop hooks.

The pulsating opener, ‘Went To Meet Her’, creates an eerie, mysterious feel but darkness soon morphs into light as the album springs to life with a quick one-two of the infectious singles, ‘Maybe You’re The Reason’ and ‘We Talk All The Time’. They are two of the album’s bravest tracks, the latter dealing with the toxicity of maintaining a relationship that has ultimately already ended - it’s brutally honest.

This record sees Bain letting go of the past, represented by the constantly forward-moving motion of the album. ‘somethingfartoogoodtofeel’ sees galloping drums propel the track forward, the acoustic strums and classical strings are a tender touch, but it’s a determined track that exudes with Amber’s newfound confidence.

On ‘Wild’, Bain breaks out into a monologue, barely stopping for a break. It’s as if she’s unable to pause for breath until she gets whatever is on her mind out into the open.

And whilst the album-closing, acoustic rendition of old-time, fan-favourite, ‘I Saw You In A Dream’ may seem like a lazy way to end the album, it instead comes across as Amber’s way of reminiscing about the past, paying ode to her earlier tracks and the time they were written, whilst simultaneously showing her artistic development and growth in maturity.

'Good At Falling' ultimately paints a picture of Amber Bain’s journey following the end of her most recent relationship. Whilst lyrically, it is a portrayal of insecurity and pain, sonically it is a bright, glistening piece of pop magic that merges the quintessential style seen on The Japanese House’s three EPs with new points of exploration that only increases the excitement around this enigmatic superstar-in-waiting.


Words: Johnny Rogerson

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