‘Get to Grips’ is the new album from Norwich four piece Sargasso Trio. An eclectic mix of tracks which, if it was not for the trademark vocals could be mistaken for a compilation album. It is varied and diverse encompassing a wide range of instruments and musical styles.
First track ‘Kathmandu’ opens in a calypso/reggae style with steel pans and a totally tropical taste, (yes it reminds me of the Lilt man). Second track ‘Dinner’, in contrast, is a funky electro number with dual vocals and ‘dinner‘ being a euphemism for something a bit more sordid. The evolving style is a trend that continues throughout and does make for a rather up and down listening experience.
Despite the obvious diversity there are numerous traits consistent throughout. There’s an underlying sense of bohemia while the lyrics are quirky and seductive. Its generally quite chilled but still holds a bounce. It is well distanced from the current voyeuristic pop scene, so much so that it almost leans too far the other way in parts.
There are a wider range of sounds and styling’s than you would expect from a standard four piece. Mainly synthesized or generated through a keyboard I suspect but the same end effect none the less. The vocal duties are split between band members, contrasting and complementing to offer a further dimension.
I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with this album. Whilst I enjoyed a number of the tracks there were an equal number that do nothing for me. ‘Get to Grips’ is not your everyday run of the mill album, and for that I commend it. But with no defined target audience it may pass a lot of people by.
(Available now through Science and Nature)