It might be doing things a bit back to front, but when you discover a band a late in the day, it can take a while to catch up with things. So after being suitably impressed with their second release ‘Suffer: Recover’ in 2009, I thought it was about time I checked out their first, the 8 track ‘Because It’s Somewhere To Be’.
The album begins with the high energy, sing-along feast that is ‘Modern Life Is A Speeding Bullet’, a song that is a frequent addition to the bands live set, thanks to its anthemic qualities, catchy intro, and strong bridge. This is swiftly followed by the interestingly titled ‘Heirs To The Atmosphere’, and although there is the typical rock band reference to alcohol in the lyrics, the overall story stands up strong and original. My only qualm with this track, is that although the backing vocals, and lead vocal combine really well at the start of the song, there is a little too much going on towards the end, and it all clashes. But the slightly noisy ending to that track is dissolved in the strength of ‘Ten Years’. Another song that stands out for its original lyrics, also for it’s smooth drum rhythms, and vocal depth; it would have made a good single release, as would the following track ‘Long Division’. This song has an atmospheric, well arranged piano intro, and is a nice contrast to the heavier guitars on some of the other tracks, as is the song ‘Suitably Numb’. A haunting melody, atmospheric vibe, and choral style interlude sets this up as a cinematic, slightly space-age track, which would’ve had many possibilities for a video. Coming back down to earth with a bump I arrived at ‘46XY’, which is probably the one weak spot on the release. The arrangement and lyrics both seemed a bit laboured at the start, but the melody did become stronger as the song moved on. But the CD ended on a high note with ‘Things Fall Apart’ and ‘Stop Breathing And Fall’. Soaring choruses, a light vocal touch, and in the case of ‘Stop Breathing And Fall’ an acoustic melody full of charm.
A great way to end the CD, and although in some ways this release does expose a band on a learning curve, it also shows another side to them, which the heavier, fuzzier, edgier rock of ‘Suffer: Recover’ can mask. This band can do soft, subtle, acoustic tracks, they can do atmospheric indie, and they can give us an interesting lyrical story to listen to as well, which adds a different dimension to their sound. Having heard both their albums now, I think it’s safe to say it’ll be interesting to hear what they do with any new material, and what direction they head in. As long as they continue to embrace their outstanding acoustic roots, reduce the shouty vocals in some of their tracks, and continue to develop their overall songwriting skills, I think the future will be an interesting one.
Check out the Library Suits online at www.myspace.com/thelibrarysuits or search for them on Facebook.