The Distance Is So Big

Written by: PP on 19/09/2013 23:14:26

With "Pebble" two years ago, Lemuria broke through with a unique sound that combined delicate female vocals with awkward male ones together in a slightly nerdy and, on paper, an incompatible manner. Yet somehow they are able to create subtly catchy - at times even irresistible - melodies out of so little, out of such an awkward soundscape. That approach continues on "The Distance Is So Big", although the release feels more confident than its predecessor in a number of ways.

One, the tempo has picked up on many songs. "Clay Baby", for instance, is almost punk in its delivery, despite still being an indie-flavored garage song at heart. Instrumentally, the band still draws many parallels to The Thermals with their slightly rough, garage-based upbeat mixture, although otherwise they are knee-deep in experimental indie rock, often at the same time. That said, Lemuria have no qualms about slowing the tempo down for highlight tracks like "Congratulations Sex", which is about as delicate and fragile as female vocals come these days without having to reach over to the silky-soft deliveries found in gothic metal bands. These tracks are in the minority though, as more obviously melodic cuts like "Oahu, Hawaii" dominate the record, giving it a different overall mood than "Pebble" had.

That's not at the cost of playful melodies that take you back to the socially awkward teenage days, though. There's a sense of what happens if we do this in all the vocal melodies as well as instrumentals, that also look toward Pavement for inspiration on what is possible within indie rock. It's wonderfully quirky, odd, and out-of-place with the rest of the records you'll hear this year, even if it feels slightly bit more polished than "Pebble" both in terms of production and songwriting. The glimpses of brilliance mentioned in this review lift up the release from a solid 7 to half a point higher.

Download: Brilliant Dancer; Oahu, Hawaii; Congratulations Sex; Clay Baby
For the fans of: Mixtapes, The Thermals, Sundials, Candy Hearts, Pavement
Listen: Facebook

Release date 18.06.2013
Bridge 9 Records

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