City Calm Down’s New Album Is Where Dark Tension Finds Luscious Release
Words by Hayley Franklin.
Opening with emotionally charged ‘Joan, I’m Disappearing’, the Melbourne trio set the scene for an album full of dark tension and luscious release. Singer Jack Bourke’s vocals are as rich and brooding as ever, but what the band have really developed with this collection is the evocative soundscapes that shimmer seamlessly through the album.
With icy synths, rumbling bass and interweaving guitars, the slow-building symphony of ‘Joan, I’m Disappearing’ is enough to make you shiver. Similarly, the stark minimalism of ‘Blame’ hits harder than any loud rock song ever could, as sombre textures ooze into each other until they build into a heart-shattering crescendo. Bourke’s voice steers the listener through commanding reflections and high-pitched moments of vulnerability, capturing the nuance of each emotion with melancholy ease.
City Calm Down haven’t forgotten how to rock out, however, as tracks like ‘Kingdom’ capture those blissful post-punk sensibilities in their bittersweet brew of tight bass lines, dance beats, delicate synths and powerful vocal lines. ‘Pride’ is just as at home on the introspective dance floor with its sprinklings of brass and catchy chorus, but lead single ‘Blood’ is the most likely to get you moving with its explosion of guitars and guttural vocals.
Echoes In Blue is packed with so many genuine emotions and moments of beauty that is deserves your full attention. Only then will you discover all of the surprises it has to offer, whether it’s the raw heartbreak of ‘I Heard Nothing From You,’ the chilling electronics of ‘Decision Fatigue’ or the sonic exploration of the cinematic closing track ‘Echoes In Blue’.
The band described their new album with a series of questions. “Has life has ever been more exciting or more artificial? Why are we so connected yet feel so alone?” One listen to Echoes In Blue and it’s clear – we don’t need answers, we just need to feel, and all the feelings are right here.