Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Albums of the Year # 67 Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever - Endless Rooms



Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever have a sound that immediately appeals to me. A crystalline gleaming guitar sound, three of them no less, intertwining and heading forward. Reminiscent of all time favourites of mine. Go Betweens, Television and The Chills. A lyrical approach most obviously indebted to The Go Betweens again, both Forster and McLennan.

I've written about them plenty in the past, yet I haven't posted my thoughts about their newest album,  Endless Rooms,(their third in all), even though it came out several weeks ago. Why is that? It's probably because as much as I like their ingredients, a certain saminess has crept into their sound.

When Courtney Barnett first emerged, I wondered whether she'd ever top Avant Gardener an early highlight which announced her arrival as one to watchDown the years she has topped it, or at least equalled it on numerous occasions. She's more than fulfilled her early bright promise. And more.

RBCF face a similar dilemma. On the 2017 their wonderful early EP French Press, and particularly its title track, set the bar pretty high for themselves.

They've put out consistently good records since but not notably great ones. It seems Endless Rooms is another to pile on that stack. It sometimes feels like they're running while standing still at one and the same time.

The guitar sound is quite gorgeous as always here. Lyrical concerns are more difficult to gauge. This is another fine, thoughtful alternative pop record without immediately striking me as an essential one. I'll give it a couple more plays over the weekend before deciding whether to go and see them live next week, where they're playing just around the corner from me.

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