Monday, 26 October 2009

Album Review - Stricken City - Songs About People I Know

Despite being based in London and having formed in the Midlands, there’s something seemingly quintessentially continental about Stricken City. The misshapen arrangement and disregard for conventional musical structure becomes an insatiable format as standout track “Sometimes I Love You” effortlessly shows a darker side to the four-piece. Accompanied with an accordion, the feeling of lying in the Parisian grass is conjured, with all the painful indifference of a long-suffering tortured heart prevailing in lyrics like /Sometimes I’m dead inside/ Call me a doctor/ Get me out of here quick/.

Juxtaposingly, “Five Metres Apart” is the perfect transition from the lyrical prominence of its predecessor to a quirky upbeat whimsical and toe-tapping gem, as with “PS”, which perfectly functions as a platform to demonstrate the warbling brilliance of lead singer, Rebekah Raa’s almost Bjork-esque vocals.

Yet, the mini-album is not without its flaws. The almost draining nature of final track “Terrible Things” (ironically) finds the pitch of Raa’s vocals grating over melancholy piano notes and the eerie, over-thought capella intro track can be included in these.

What this does do is showcase the diverse capabilities of what is a fairly new band with the perfect balance of innate unconventionality, 80’s overtones and an addictive Indie personality, all seemingly fluently fused into an impressive debut that Stricken City should be proud of.

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