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Blood Red Shoes - Get Tragic (Album Review)

Thursday, 31 January 2019 Written by Jacob Brookman

Blood Red Shoes’ fifth studio album is a lairy procession of ‘90s-infused indie-rock songs that make great use of Laura-Mary Carter’s sexy, laconic burr. Created after the band fell out—and Carter promptly left for L.A.—the Brighton duo built bridges and got to work. The result is probably their best work since 2008’s ‘Box of Secrets’.

The sound on ‘Get Tragic’ is curiously throwback. Carter’s double-tracked brat-speak makes one think of Republica or Suede, while grander arrangements such as Mexican Dress (congas) and Find My Own Remorse (string-synths) recall a time of glorious excess in indie music—a time when brass and string sections would pop up all over records, and music videos were a procession of bands shouting into fish-eye lenses while hyperactive directors oversaturated the colours.

There are some really engaging moments here. Howl is a groovy, smashy pop track that has excellent hooks and a sparse, fresh arrangement, while the album’s closer, Elijah, hits some very elegant marks.

That said it—like a lot of the album—creates a curious effect when it comes to drum patches. Five years of retro 808 drum machine dominance in pop music has had the strange effect of making many more contemporary synth patches sound dated.

It’s an effect that persists over the entire record, and though its use could be seen as a natural progression for pop, it does make one question the record’s immediate currency.

Ultimately, though, ‘Get Tragic’ is an album of superb songcraft and imaginative composition. Thank heavens they didn’t call it quits for good! Actually, it’s possible that the Mercury Prize win for Wolf Alice may have given bands like Blood Red Shoes a second wind, breathing confidence into the brigantine sails of punchy, epic indie-rock.

Blood Red Shoes Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Thu January 31 2019 - GLASGOW Stereo

Click here to compare & buy Blood Red Shoes Tickets at Stereoboard.com.

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