Mancunian four piece Slow Readers Club wow us with their Deep Electro-Indie vibes on their new album Cavalcade. Bringing electronica and Indie-Rock together, Slow Readers Club have created a sound that is simultaneously familiar and new. Previously, they have drawn comparison to the likes of Interpol, Killers and Arcade Fire, but to me their sound on Cavalcade goes deeper and inspiration further back.
While Aaron Starkie’s vocal performance is reminiscent of Editors, the combination of his keyboards, Kurtis Starkie’s Guitar, James Ryan’s Bass hooks and David Whitworth’s driving drum rolls give a feeling of Depeche Mode’s late 80’s and early 90’s material. The result will give current genres a real run for their money. Fool for Your Philosophy is a perfect example of this combination, opening with a robotic keyboard and quickly launching into chanting baritone vocals “I was alone, I was afraid, I was a fool for your philosophy…” followed by the haunting chorus “In my…darkest…moment…”. The melodies are both dark and uplifting, a theme that is evident throughout the album.
The lyrics are deeply introspective, can be simplistic and are occasionally clichéd; “Let me count the ways I love you” on opener Start Again. At other points they sound almost Euro-pop, most evident through the rhyming couplets on Days Like These Will Break Your Heart. While on the face of it this may not sound so great, the lyrical simplicity carefully cultivates fantastic imagery that makes their music as accessible as it is brilliant. The vocal performance from Aaron varies little, but this is no bad thing as his dulcet tones are captivating. When it does however, such as on Plant the Seed we hear some higher ranges that come as a pleasant surprise and contrast to the earlier tracks. Keeping this hidden for so long keeps the album fresh, reigniting your interest and drawing you in deeper, enveloping you in their dark little musical universe.
From Plant the Seed on, the tracks are like a runaway train, flowing from strength to strength and becoming a darkly enjoyable roller-coaster of emotion so thrilling, I simply couldn’t turn it off. Broad strokes, I suspect Cavalcade will be very popular with fans of alternative music old and new. Having already been championed by XFm they’re setting off on the right foot and deservedly so. Very few acts successfully make melancholic yet uplifting music, but Slow Readers Club have succeeded with this effort. All things considered, it looks very much like 2015 will be their year.
Stand out tracks: I Saw a Ghost – Fool for Your Philosophy – Plant the Seed
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