Most bands are distinguished by their frontperson; Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever are distinguished by the absence of 1. The Melbourne indie rock band has three guitarists who alternate lead vocals—Fran Keaney, Tom Russo, and Joe White—and whereas they’re all succesful singers, none is a pure made-for-the-spotlight kind. Between their personable, if modest, voices and the relentless, high-octane jangle of the guitars, the impact is like a type of periodic R.E.M. songs the place the bassist sings lead, besides Michael Stipe doesn’t return after it’s over. It’s simply all the time a special man who’s not Michael Stipe up subsequent.
Whereas vocals could also be one thing of an afterthought for this band, the guitars themselves are something however. They’re Rolling Blackouts’ motive for being, they usually spout from each crevice of the group’s third album, Limitless Rooms, like jets in an particularly luxurious whirlpool tub. The album by no means stops paying off with fidgety riffs, voluptuous tones, and glowing thrives. Although the band’s purview stays Eighties faculty rock, they mine so many shades and distinct variations that every track appears like a pull of a slot machine. Wound by nervous, frenzied guitars, “Tidal River” teeters with the risky fringe of Heaven Up Right here-era Echo and the Bunnymen, whereas “Blue Eye Lake,” with its accents of post-punk and psychedelia, conjures the nocturnal shimmer of the Church. “Dive Deep,” in the meantime, takes a flip towards the glammy with the report’s slickest, showiest lead guitar heroics. For a band that arrived so totally fashioned, their sound has solely continued to develop richer, the small print round its edges extra articulated.
Limitless Rooms’ floor pleasures have a method of masking how purposeful their songwriting may be. Written amid the pandemic and the Australian wildfires declared one of the vital harmful wildlife disasters in fashionable historical past, these songs fixate on class disparities and environmental destruction. Together with a memorable picture of jet skiers dashing over ailing reefs, “Tidal River” is thorned with solutions of local weather change. “Ceiling’s on hearth, the prepare’s leaving the station/It’s January and we’re on trip,” Russo sings, with simply sufficient of a wry edge in his voice you possibly can miss how useless critical the subject material is. On “Noticed You on the Japanese Seashore,” he conjures a panorama in decay: “The petrochemical manufacturing facility glitters like so many valuable stones, even via the bay home windows of the quarter acre houses.”
As incensed as they learn on paper, these lyrics by no means sting sufficient to upset the music’s easygoing vibe, not even on “The Means It Shatters,” the place White pushes again in opposition to rising anti-immigrant sentiment within the county (“For those who had been on the boat, would you flip the opposite method?” he sings). A few of that comes right down to the band’s informal, every-dude presentation; Rolling Blackouts are an excessive amount of of a hangout band to humor any notions of their very own significance. They’re extra fascinated by making a lovable rock’n’roll report than a pointed political assertion, although at its finest Limitless Rooms occurs to be each.
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