Wednesday, 3 December 2014
Album Review - The Son(s) - The Things I Love Are Not At Home
I’m writing this review on a cold, crisp autumn night in Glasgow, conditions which complement The Son(s) music perfectly. The Things I Love Are Not At Home is an album of songs that speak of heartbreak and loss, accompanied by music which is, at times, almost minimalist folk and, at others, crammed full of beeps and bleeps and all manner of musical styles, all producing an album of real depth. The band, yet another feather in the hat of the increasingly impressive Olive Grove Records, are a mysterious proposition whose Facebook biography describes them thus: “The Sons were three. Two are gone. Now there is only one. The Son(s).” Given these various departures, the melancholic nature of the album is perhaps no surprise.
Opener Vinny & Ronnie Creeping On The Waitresses is an instrumental track which brings to mind Beck at his most laid back, mixing brass, wonderful sounding 70’s synths and shuffling beats. Paint Eyes on Your Eyelids follows and, again, it’s a mix of styles, taking in space age electronic noises, electric and acoustic guitars and beautifully languid vocals. Overall, the album follows that theme and, throughout, that mix works really well with K.P’s vocals - at times, half whispered and, at others (especially during The Numbers Have You Wrong) redolent of Thom Yorke at his most hushed. That song in fact starts off like a distant cousin of You And Whose Army before taking a sharp turn and heading towards a 70’s AOR feel which is really quite marvellous. Bon Iver is another, perhaps obvious comparison with the likes of Underneath The Arbor and When Calm Reaches Down having a feel of For Emma, Forever Ago about them.
My own personal favourite and, along with The Numbers Have You Wrong, the standout track on the album is the penultimate track On The Forth We Float. The song transports you through Leith to the sea, floating along on a woozy melody that shares its’ DNA with Granddaddy’s timeless So You’ll Aim Towards The Sky. Lyrically, it shares the same space as Frightened Rabbit’s Floating In The Forth albeit it doesn’t share that song’s fatalism; instead the sense of floating on the Forth is one of relief or escapism.
The Son(s) have produced an album that offers an escape from the everyday and is music to get lost in whilst you huddle inside away from the autumn weather. It’s a real treat and one that deserves repeated plays.
- David McElroy
The Son(s) - The Things I Love Are Not At Home is out now via Olive Grove Records and is available on download and limited edition vinyl from Bandcamp.