Pseudo Shark

Couches

Written by: HES on 30/11/2014 18:25:58

I reviewed Pseudo Shark’s first EP a while back and overall the release was so strong that the main problem was, that it was very short. Pseudo Shark is now back with a “long” EP or “short” LP - however way you want to label 7 tracks. The result is overwhelmingly good and overall just so fucking euphonious, well-sounding, well-mixed and well-produced that I simply don’t understand how such a young band is able to deliver releases in this caliber already, putting some of the EP’s of the big rock bands of the day to shame. Really, it’s impressive and such a weight off my shoulder as a music reviewer to be able to spend my time talking about the substance instead of making excuses such as “had it only been better mixed” which is depressingly the overall subject of many of my EP-reviews.

Pseudo Shark is super introvert and if you expect sticking choruses with hooks enough for mainstream consumption, you’re looking the wrong way. Whereas the band’s first EP “Forming Opinions” was more folksy, this release is more modern - however you do hear an interpretation of the folksy influences in songs like “Unwind” that has magically intricate guitars starting in folk-patterns but then again entering this new hybrid-stage that I haven’t really heard before. “Something In The Stairwell” is the probably the most catchy of the tracks on “Couches” using both melancholy and warmth at the same time to create this strangely longing feeling. “The Same” is more up-beat and naive which creates great contrast to the otherwise very contemplative and sombre mood of “Couches”. It’s also quite clear that the song-writing has greatly improved - don’t get me wrong - the “Forming Opinions” EP was not in any way formed by bad song-writing, it’s just that the band has merely jumped further up the ladder and it’s very apparent in songs like “The Forgetting” that is a build-up from soft tones to a double-vocal crescendo.

In my last review I remarked upon the fact that the lyrics may be a bit too Christian for a heathen like myself. However this is pretty much changed and it seems that the focus has been more on music than Religion on this cut. I am not a fan of bands trying to in anyway disguise their choice of faith - I am however a sucker for relatable lyrics and with the introvertness of Pseudo Shark’s universe, it’s pretty important for it to be relatable. I can’t say if the guys from Pseudo Shark actually read my last review but I find that at least many of the concerns I brought up - inspite of “Forming Opinions” actually being more than a decent first EP - have actually been addressed on “Couches”. I am baffled by how the band actually manages to live up to my expectations, because they were pretty high, yet when I hear a song like “Midtown” there is just no finger to put on it production-wise, construction-wise or any-other-wise. However, I will understand if the universe might be hard to get into; it being so introvert. At the same time, this is where the euphony I mentioned comes into play - it’s truly hard to not in some way just get sucked in by the fact that Pseudo Shark just sounds really fucking good.

8

Download: Midtown, Unwind, Something In The Stairwell, The Forgetting
For The Fans Of: Foals, Death Cab For Cutie, Dog Is Dead
Listen: Facebook

Release date 11.11.2014
Self-released

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