Thursday, 13 February 2014

SOUND OF THE SIRENS - ALBUM REVIEW

Sound Of The Sirens - A Long Way To Fall 
Sound Of The Sirens - A Long Way To Fall

When I was about 12, my big sister went off to University and left me with a tape that featured two albums by US female duo, Indigo Girls. I was in to Britpop at the time so didn't listen to it for a while but, when I did, the powerful vocal harmonies and impassioned lyrics brought tears to my eyes and opened my mind to a whole range of alternative music styles. For over twenty years I've been waiting to hear another band come up with comparable harmonies and lyrical style so I'm relieved to finally say I have found the next great pretenders to this throne; Sound Of The Sirens. The Exeter duo released this album at Christmas time, oddly, but I am only now just getting my ears on it in order to share with you lucky people.

The album bursts in to life with the determinedly energetic stomp 'The Night Before' which is a great introduction to the harmonies of Hannah and Abbe. 'In This Time' is a sweet, folk romp of a tune with boot stamps, furiously strummed guitars and mandolin and the hand claps that you would expect around a camp fire at a festival. This is earthy, elemental music based on honest emotion and presented in the only way they know how - luckily for us, that is through sublime harmonies, delicious melodies and infectious rhythms. The lament that is 'Afraid Of The Dark' forms the perfect musical accompaniment to a broken heart, for sure, but more specifically that moment just before you realise that life will go on and you will find love again. 'Anything Less' is a minimalist, Simon & Garfunkel-esque piece of loveliness whilst 'Up To The House' is a break up song of defiance, intricacy and undulations as well as more original ideas than most singer-songwriters can muster in an entire album.

There is a definite KT Tunstall feel to 'Who We Are' which is suspect is a bit of a crowd pleaser - it's certainly the duo's most commercial feeling song. The haunting openings of 'The Ghost' are simply beautiful as the delicate voices of our heroines slowly build in power and by the end of the song we are definitely in Indigo Girls territory...in a very good way. Probably my favourite track on this album, 'A Thousand Words' has a great blues-country stomp with a rousingly uplifting chorus and a parting shot lyric of "So I placed you in a corner and I hoped you would behave!". The final track of this collection is 'Faith In Fire' which starts as a melancholy ballad but within three minutes or so it turns in to a furious paced, foot stomping, arms in the air tune that will have many a festival crowd whooping and hollering along this summer. What I love most about Sound Of The Sirens is that here we have two musicians who have found their harmonious soul mate and it doesn't matter what they do, they will always make great sounding music together. The real icing on the cake is that they can write great songs too.

More information: http://www.soundofthesirens.net/index.html

Live Dates:

15th February - Mama Stones, Exeter
19th February - Barnfield Theatre, Exeter
22nd February - James Street Vaults, Plymouth
1st March - Princess Pavilions, Falmouth
9th March - Cavern, Exeter
22nd March - The Zanzibar Club, Liverpool
28th March - The Boat House, Ilfracombe
29th March - Looe Angling Club, Looe
12th April - Mama Stones, Exeter
3rd May - Talk, Birmingham
6th June - Occombe Beer Festival, Paignton

8th August - Phoenix Arts Centre, Exeter w/Kast Off Kinks

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