The first listen through, Evans The Deaths’ self-titled debut album was a little bit hit n miss. I kind of veered in and out of attention dangerously easily. The vocals, which at first were super kind to me, started to get me down. The first stand out track was Catch Your Cold: thing is, it only being the second song meant that the mid-album tracks seemed slightly mushy and a little ‘un-defined’ in comparison.
‘Threads’ (track 7) through to ‘I’m So Unclean’ (track 9) were very welcome highlights when they eventually turned up. I think perhaps the short song lengths and consistent mid-tempo throughout this album have meant that the songs don’t really have much scope to evolve, and by the time they’ve become familiar they suddenly end. With an average song length of around two and a half minutes it doesn’t take a genius to work out why this album can’t seem to change gear.
Instrumentally I have few complaints, although I could’ve done with a bit of chucky end added on to the guitar. The kit’s mega tight and works like a nicely fitted bathroom, not leaking all over the floor like some shabby retro 80’s shambles that’s over-due a service. Thankfully front-woman Katherine Whitaker re-assures me that she’ll be there “under the kitchen sink” as You’re Joking rounds off the album in characteristic sober-latude. Once again, rambling on about microwaves and life lived surrounded by urban-suburbia in a pseudo-Smiths-esque fashion has it’s up-sides, although vocally lacking the comedy of a certain charming man.
The album doesn’t really seem to say, do or be about much and I suppose it doesn’t really need to be. A good come-down album, maybe too good, kind of depressing actually and probably best to avoid excessive listens if;
A. You’re in too good a mood
B. In too bad a mood
C. You want to get up
D. If you’re about to go out
E. If you’ve just found out you got miss-sold payment protection insurance
F. You expected the album to be filled with an “infectious and frenetic brand of guitar pop” which according to the band is “certain to make a big impression.” Didn’t really happen to me I must say.
In some ways ‘Evans The Death’ seem to be an off the mark twee rendition of the XX and unfortunately don’t quite cut the Colman’s for me on this debut.
Words: Nathan Pounds