TALK TO ANGELS have quite obviously been talking to a lot of people recently. People who can ‘make things happen’ it would seem. The Leeds / Bradford quartet have been making a bit of a noise in all the right places and having been invited to last year’s SXSW in Texas, followed by their inaugural US tour, they are now set to make a similar impression in their homeland with the release of this five-track EP.
(The three original members of the band were augmented a couple of years ago when Mickey Dale, keyboard player with Embrace, threw his hat into the ring to help fill out he band’s impressive sound.)
This EP shows two distinct sides to the band, and oddly for me, I prefer the slower track ‘She’ to the more rocking ‘Enemies Closer.’ It’s the latter that kicks off this EP and driven by the buzz of synths and crashing drums, I am not so sure about the vocals. It all seems a bit flat and forced until Craig is joined by the others in the chorus. But it rocks, and will be a sure-fire ‘live’ favourite.
‘She’ however (and there are two versions on the EP) is more moody and introspective. It has all the makings of an ‘epic’ and now that I know Mickey Dale is involved with TALK TO ANGELS, I can see a kind of Embrace influence shining through. ‘She’ is far better suited to the vocals of lead singer Craig (I’m assuming it is still he who takes the lead on this one) and the song builds in intensity with the addition of a string section throughout, the cello of which gives the track a decent ‘depth.’
Now, this is where it gets a little sketchy. The copy I was sent is just a hand-written CD-R, with no track listing either on the CD itself or the sleeve. Track number three, I assume is called something like, ‘First Night Alone’ and is along the lines of ‘She’ in that it has a big, dramatic sound that builds. It’s a good ‘clean’ sounding track, quite heavy in its own way and again utilising a string section. The real surprise comes however with just over a minute and a half remaining, when the song breaks down suddenly only to erupt again with some searing, loud guitar solo, filling to the end.
The fourth track is the longest of the four different songs at just over five minutes. The first minute or so is pretty quiet, but again it develops into a huge soundscape with the strings this time giving it the feel of a movie soundtrack. The vocals are big and powerful – maybe just a touch over the top towards the end, but that lad certainly has a pair of lungs on him!
I’m guessing these guys are going to appeal to the more mainstream pop scene, and younger female listeners / fans in particular. And although ‘She’ and the third track are really good songs – even to an old punk like me! – they are kind of similar and TALK TO ANGELS may have to look towards a little variation if they are to retain what I perceive to be their notoriously fickle fanbase in the long term.
But… nice, all the same!
(Released through Warp Speed Carousel on 18th October 2010)
(7.5 / 10)