Remember Trial Kennedy? They were a four piece band from Melbourne, if I’m not mistaken. They released a couple of albums that featured their slightly off kilter brand of contemporary rock. But what really made them stand out was singer Tim Morrison’s distinguishable soaring voice. Their album Colour Day Tours was a favourite of mine during my Year 12 days, but sadly they have consciously uncoupled themselves as a band and left a small hole in this poor little editor’s heart. Fortunately, the spiritual successor to that band has emerged in the form of Brisbane’s Seahorse Divorce, and if you want proof then treat your ears to our exclusive premiere of their new EP Public Transport Fantasy Sequence.
Finally, public transport that isn’t horrible. Seahorse Divorce have crafted a textured and introspective EP driven by masterful guitar and drum interplay.
Considering I spent the majority of that introduction talking about another band I guess it’s prudent I properly introduce you boys and girls to the band whose name is in the headline. Seahorse Divorce formed in 2012 and wasted no time in dropping their self titled album the following year. In this day and age that’s a pretty ballsy move to make, but for the most part that album proved that the boys definitely had the passion for what they did and they could well indeed have a promising future in the old music industry. Which leads us to today, where I hold their yet to be released EP in my hands (and when I say that I really mean it’s sitting in my iTunes library).
Their new EP Public Transport Fantasy Sequence is a worthy successor to their self titled debut and the band’s growth is obvious form the get go. What is worth noting straight away is the superior level of production on the EP. It no longer feels like the vocals are competing with the other instruments to be heard. There is a more harmonious vibe which really works in the band’s favour. The pretty guitars and vocals benefit form this greatly. Before it could come across as slightly jarring to hear all these elements crash together, but in this case they all know their place and support each other instead of distract.
The vocals are at their best when held back slightly and are more measured particularly on Long Term Loan and closing track True Survivors. They’re light yet strong and when it comes to those vocal gymnastics it is impressive to listen to. If you’re a fan of the aforementioned Trial Kennedy or fellow Brisbanites Dead Letter Circus then this will be your jam for sure. Lyrically the songs each follow this path of examining one’s own life in conjunction with finding a place in the world without sacrificing integrity. A lot like the introspective lyrical matter Thom Yorke concerned himself with on The Bends. When it comes to allegory Seahorse Divorce aren’t quite up to that level yet, but hopefully as they develop as songwriters this is an area they can flesh out.
But the true star of the show is the interplay between the guitars and drums. Every song explodes with the excitable guitars weaving in and out of the drum patterns. It is very dynamic and is Seahorse Divorce’s strength and at times can be slightly reminiscent of experimental instrumental dudes sleepmakeswaves. Metatext and Negative Space boasts this proudly, and I found myself tapping my fingers, toes and other body parts along to these sweet, sweet jams.
Seahorse Divorce have a few shows coming up in the near future, including an upcoming tour with Oslow. Have a listen to their EP Public Transport Fantasy Sequence below and be sure to visit their social pages for more info on shows and where to snap up tickets from. Public Transport Fantasy Sequence will be available at your friendly neighbourhood record store as of January 30.
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