After touring to support their debut album ‘I’m Not Well’, frontman Mark Holley didn’t really want to settle down at home in Exeter, so instead set off for Iceland, where he would go on to write the foundations of ‘Reiði’ (which apparently is the Icelandic word for rage). The result is an indie rock album that is incredibly angular, with edges so sharp that the listener has to be careful that they don’t cut themselves. This isn’t a style of music that I really enjoy listening to, but even I can appreciate the maturity and solidity of the songs that are on offer here. I used to live in Exeter, and was born and raised in the West Country, but can’t remember any local bands ever sounding quite like this.
This is music with drama, to be played on a stage with an opening and thundering sky. This isn’t music for the summer, but rather when it is bleak and cold, and as only then will the full potential and enormity of these songs really hit home. The guitars jangle, and the bass and drums keep it all well-grounded, and no-one could ever think that there was a band out for singles success, but rather is all about the album. When Holley says that the songwriter he most admires is Neil Young it is obvious, as that influence is through everything he is doing. If I can enjoy this and it’s not my normal style of music, what does that say about the quality of the album as whole?
By Kev Rowland