Only a few days ago, Clash noted that the UK psychedelic underground is in rude health. Well, there must be something in the water, with acclaimed Nottingham group The Soundcarriers making their return after a lengthy – seven years, in fact – absence.
New album ‘Wilds’ more than lives up to expectations, however. A brilliantly put together psychedelic experience, it matches lysergic effects to Krautrock rhythms, producing something truly cosmic in the process. Opener ‘Waves’ sets the tone, with its punchy rhythms and hallucinogenic vocals, the overall impact akin to an afternoon of lucid dreaming.
‘Saturate’ is reminiscent of Broadcast at their most immaculate, while ‘All These Things’ has a slight Baroque element amid its percussive pyrotechnics. ‘Traces’ is a coy yet otherworldly pop song, a compact jewel that sits in contrast to the more relaxed, wide-open landscapes of the title track.
A concise, refined nine track return, ‘Wilds’ is the work of a band obeying on their own impulses. Crafted in the absence of outside pressure, The Soundcarriers deliberately utilised non-studio spaces, allowing an increased sense of whimsical experimentation to seep back into their work – the drifting keys of closer ‘Happens Too Soon’ for example, or the Morse code effects on ‘Falling Back’.
A helter-skelter ride through extra-dimensional sonics, ‘Wilds’ is an exhilarating return, The Soundcarriers’ lengthy absence simply making their return all the more potent.
Words: Robin Murray
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