This Feeling

Monday, November 09, 2015

Album Review :: City Calm Down - In A Restless House




City Calm Down

In A Restless House

November 6 2015 (I Oh You)

8/10

Words: Linn Branson


Despite having been around for a few years (seven, in fact) it is only now Melbourne's City Calm Down get around to putting out their first album. And there's not one of the 11 tracks on this long-awaited, three-years-in-the-making work that doesn't ring with expansive melody and vibrant driving rhythm and big hooky choruses, the like of which we heard on their 'Movements' EP.

Bringing in producer Malcolm Besley (Client Liaison, Snakadaktal), 'In A Restless House' is an assured debut from the off. 'Border On Control’ displays a sonic palette of layered synths and trundling bass alongside Jack Bourke's deep baritone vocal. The more saturnine 'Rabbit Run' - the single which brought them to wider attention outside of Australia - with its thumping bass and upbeat drums shadow a contained yearning sentiment. 'Wandering', opening on with sotto voce piano chords, before vocally brought alive with accompanying drums to rise into something of epic description. 'Your Fix' and 'Falling' are both powerhouses of hooks and energy, while ‘Nowhere To Start’, cools things down in a dreamy duet with Kerri Harvey.

The driving rhythm of 'Son' is catchy and compulsive, meshing vocal harmonies with Samuel Mullaly’s keys and, of course, Bourke’s voice around which swirl horns and a choir of backing vocals. Closing on the three-minute album title track  which features a beautiful mix of Bourke’s irresistible vocal dynamics and rising drums, and ending on a bed of pulsating percussion, it makes for a fine end piece that firmly places City Calm Down's first full-length as a work that has been well worth the wait.

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