By: Ed Dyer
14 August, 2018, 12:00
If Wiltshire/Bath based band Bad Sounds are not on your new music radar, then change that immediately, for, unless you have been hiding under the unpleasant kind of rock that blocks out all music and music related news, debut album Get Better has to be one of the most anticipated releases out of the West Country for some time.
Bad Sounds have been chipping away and honing their sound for a lot longer than their tender years suggest is possible. Through various guises and line ups (Crash and the Bandicoots / Crash and the Coots/Clementines all came and went as operational band names, thankfully) brothers Callum and Ewan Merrett, the musical axis around which it all happens, along with long time drummer Olivia Dimery and more recent recruits Charlie Pitt and Sam Hunt have developed, worked and fabricated a sound that has taken some of the best soul, funk, psychedelic and disco sounds of yesteryear, run them through some modern pop tech, slathered on some Daisy Age hip-hop rhythms and rhymes and added a huge dose of humour until it has become something very sleek, modern and fun. Yes, music in the 21st Century doesn’t have to be dour and serious, it can be crazy too. Just check out any of the bands promo videos for confirmation of how far this can be pushed – especially first release single from this record, ‘Evil Powers’. Utterly bonkers.
Tracks such as ‘Wages’ and ‘Avalanche’ have also been heard before but sit alongside newer material perfectly having done their jobs as signifiers to what was to come. The same could probably be said for much of the bands previous material – recent EP’s Phresssh and Mixtape 1 and singles like the brilliant ‘Are You High?’ gave warning as to what was to come, and work as part of a wider body of work perfectly. This collection of upbeat, catchy and, well, damn jolly songs is perhaps best described as day-glo – they scream out for attention, desperate to crawl into ears and lay infectious melodies in heads, and only a fool would resist.
Feelgood is an expression that gets heard too infrequently these days, but is eminently suitable here, although don’t think for a minute that means these tunes are throw-away candy floss light. No, there is a lyrical integrity and depth that is totally at odds with the sheer popness of the music, although as always there is that element of humour that disarms and, well, makes you enjoy yourself whilst listening…
The Merrett Brothers and their team have conjured something very special indeed, but then, they always looked like they were going to. If this is not on everyone’s album of the year list then the world is truly doomed to a future of misery and boredom. Oh, and yes, we are going there – this album does indeed help you to Get Better…
Get Better is out on 17th August.