Sunday, 24 June 2012

New Beard – New Beard City (Album Preview)


Possibly the best band ever to have ‘New’ in their name!

Last year I heard Common Grackle’s ‘The Great Depression’ for the first time and it sent shivers down my spine with its originality and ability to surprise me even after listening to it constantly. This year - although I’ve enjoyed many album releases - nothing has come close to this debut album by New Beard. It has everything I need in an album; many styles, strings, great harmonies and a tuba player instead of a bassist. I have never tried to review an album I have listened to so much it almost feels like my own project, but here goes!

From the opening bars of ‘Doom’ you can tell something special is about to happen. A subtle tuba bass line and strings introduce an album which challenges you to join in the journey. ‘My People are around’ introduces the catchiness of the band, while the lyrics cannot fail but to bring a smile to your face. ‘Arizona Angels’, the story of the singers’ former band is filled with emotion and shows a slower side to the band, while ‘Spinning’ is almost the total flipside, bright and happy with a touch of the bizarre New Beard way when moving from verse to chorus and back.
My favourite track on this album is a song which reminds me of an artist I have always had a musical soft spot for, Ed Harcourt. ‘The Silver’ has all of his trademarks both vocally and musically, and as my main reason for liking this album is its originality, even I find that strange that this particular track stands out so much.

There are so many little catchy fills and memorable solos on this album; it will keep the average music fan going for weeks. I’m still trying to work out which instruments were used on some tracks too, another reason I can’t switch it off. I’m still finding new things when I listen, and trust me if I had this on vinyl I would be off to buy a new copy due to wear! This album is a true musician’s album, and I certainly see a big future for New Beard. Nice work.

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