Home > News & Reviews > Ought

Ought - Room Inside The World (Album Review)

Thursday, 01 March 2018 Written by Ben Gallivan

It’s been a couple of years since we heard something new from the Montreal art-punkers Ought, which is surprising given the bombardment of material that the world was subjected to a couple of years back: an EP and a couple of albums in the space of 18 months. But what an exciting bombardment it was.

An early self-release, ‘New Calm’, dropped a little while after the band formed in 2012, and their following output was swift, fresh and hugely diverting. ‘More Than Any Other Day’ – their debut album from 2014 -  saw the band become lauded all over the world. Multiple appearances on end-of-year lists were inevitable and forthcoming, as was the ‘Once More with Feeling’ EP, which was squeezed in before the year was out.

Released in 2015, ‘Sun Coming Down’ carried on in the same vein and produced some of their finest work to that point, particularly the epic Beautiful Blue Sky. In their time away, frontman Tim Darcy released a solo LP, ‘Saturday Night’, and here he again takes a prominent role.

Darcy has always been something of a lyrical and vocal gymnast, but on ‘Room Inside the World’ he takes things to a whole new level. His sardonic, playful delivery has been likened to Talking Heads’ David Byrne and the late Mark E. Smith – and rightly so as they clearly are influences – but something else is afoot.

On opener Into the Sea (already very likely to be the best thing you’ve heard so far in 2018) Darcy sounds like Elvis Presley gone full crooner. On second listen, there’s a hint of the Human League’s Phil Oakey and U2’s Bono in there too.

The band seem to use the same methods in putting together a record here as they have in the past. We do get an extra track (nine rather than the eight on the previous records, although closer Alice wouldn’t look too out of place on a b-sides EP), but the overall feel is similar.

We start off with urgency in the first half, including the very ‘Heads-esque Disaffectation and These Three Things, before settling down into a more relaxed, downbeat second segment. Desire is a beauty and, while Darcy’s vocals are in danger of getting a little tiresome at times, there’s a simple beat and bassline underpinning it all, allowing the hushed backing tones of a gospel choir to cover his vocal tics for now.

One thing of note, though, is the lack of an overtly experimental track. Everything is a lot more accessible musically and the production values are a little more polished. The tunes are still very much there even if the challenges are few and far between – perhaps that’s what we all need? An Ought album without all the complicated stuff?

Whereas ‘More Than Any Other Day’ was a near-classic from the end of the first listen, ‘Room Inside the World’ may take a little more getting used to. There isn’t a signature Ben Stidworthy bassline (a la Habit and Beautiful Blue Sky) here but there is a richer overall sound; one that should pick up more new fans and cement a firm relationship with the current ones.

Ought Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Fri April 20 2018 - BRISTOL Exchange
Sat April 21 2018 - LEEDS Brudenell Social Club
Sun April 22 2018 - GLASGOW Stereo
Mon April 23 2018 - BIRMINGHAM Hare and Hounds
Tue April 24 2018 - LONDON Garage

Click here to compare & buy Ought Tickets at Stereoboard.com.





Let Us Know What You Think - Leave A Comment!




You May Also Like:

'I'm A Boy Staring Up Into Space': Jay Forrest Talks The Return Of Hopesfall
Wed 08 Aug 2018
Photo: Natalie Bisignano Few bands have enjoyed a career as varied and colourful as Hopesfall's. Forming 20 years ago in North Carolina, they emerged just as metalcore and other forms of moody hard rock were beginning to take off. However, they aren't remembered for their contributions to the scene as much as how they subverted its tropes. Drawing from screamo and psychedelic space rock in equal measures, their releases 'No Wings to Speak Of' and 'The Satellite Years' to this day stand up as classics of the genre.
'It Feels Like A Landmark Album For Us': Delta Sleep Discuss The Expansive 'Ghost City'
Fri 10 Aug 2018
Photo: Paola Baltazar​ Much like prog before it, math-rock hasn't always appeared the most accessible of genres. As a form, it's designed to keep listeners on their toes, directing and misdirecting with syncopated rhythms, jagged melodic progressions and non-standard time signatures. That might not seem like a recipe for commercial success, but if there's one thing Brits can get behind it's art that's awkward, intelligent and self aware.
Life In A Whirlwind: Mt. Joy Discuss Their Startling Rise
Wed 15 Aug 2018
Until a certain streaming service turned their lifelong musical fantasies into a reality, the members of folky Americana quintet Mt. Joy were on a very different path indeed. To retool an old saying, life as they know it happened while they were busy living other best laid plans.
From Blues Boy To Next Big Thing: The Making of Dan Owen
Thu 23 Aug 2018
It’s easy to question the authenticity of any young musician who stirs up a super-sized buzz. Are they merely a record company’s latest marionette? Yet another superficial media darling destined for 15 minutes of fame? Dan Owen certainly generated significant plaudits before his debut album, ‘Stay Awake With Me’, had even been released, but the finished product revealed a special singer-songwriter who, after years of grafting for his shot at the big time, is being lauded for all the right reasons.
Living Their Best Lives: Idles' Joe Talbot Talks Their New Album 'Joy As An Act Of Resistance'
Thu 30 Aug 2018
Crackling through a speakerphone, Joe Talbot’s voice is calm and level. “I don’t feel any pressure to do anything,” he says. “It’s up to me. I genuinely don’t care what anyone else makes of what I do. It’s up to me to be as honest to myself, and truthful to the band and our art, as possible. The rest is up to you.”
It All Starts With The Song: The Beating Heart Of Country Star Brent Cobb
Fri 31 Aug 2018
Photo: Don VanCleave It may sound like wishful thinking, but in an ideal world music would begin and end with nothing but a great song. There’d be no record companies or publications trying to shape our tastes. Image would be unimportant. Sales irrelevant. Radio airplay redundant. The only thing that would matter would be the creativity of the musician and how they reflect themselves through their art.
New Soul Legends UK Dates Announced Featuring Lemar
Mon 13 Aug 2018
A new batch of Soul Legend dates featuring Lemar have been announced.
Never Bored: Ugly-Pop Band Skating Polly Discuss Life On Tour
Mon 10 Sep 2018
Wanderlust is a word usually associated with gap years and middle aged people who want a fancy way of saying they’re bored with the life they’ve made for themselves.
 
< Prev   Next >