Ella Kemp gives you the DL on when and how to listen to the debut album from Circa Waves ‘Young Chasers’…
“The music we play is fun!” and so the crowd rejoiced.
Before I hear your audible groans at yet another four-piece young male indie rock band, give them a chance. Sure, their pitch wont make you jump out of your seat in amazement at the originality, but all the same Circa Waves are most definitely worth a listen. Formed in 2013 in Liverpool, the four lads released their debut album late 2014. Catchy guitar riffs, upbeat tunes and indie haircuts – the band isn’t breaking any boundaries but at least they’re having a good time. We took their debut album for a spin to see if it could pack a punch. Here’s how to listen to the key tracks of Young Chasers.
The opening and key riff of the song is reminiscent of the time of The Inbetweeners – when the guys on screen were older than us and University was but a distant dream. Think Razorlight, The Coral, the Rumble Strips and their key hits to get an idea of what Circa Waves are going for. It’s one of those songs that every British sitcom will use to underscore the E4 pilot of this fall’s new hit. That’s how you know it’s a banger. Catchy, upbeat and completely belt out-able at every festival, party and bedroom rave you’ll come across. Acting as poster boy for the album, T-Shirt Weather sets the tone for what’s to come: guitars, teenage tones and something that can only be described as audible sunshine. Perfect for that post-summer blues pick-me-up we all need.
Often songs with the L word in the title are expected to be melancholic and best listened to post-break up or alone in the dark on a bad Monday evening. Circa Waves’ My Love however would give you quite a jolt in your bedroom alone. 4 seconds of silence and then yet another fast-paced high octane guitar riff throws you straight into the deep end of this one. The song is the kind of thing you would imagine Nat Wolff to sing to Cara Delevigne in Paper Towns, if he was the lead singer of a liverpudlian indie rock band (too late for a Naked Brothers Band reunion?). Head-bop and toe-tap inducing, it’s a yes from me. Listen to this when you’re feeling the love, even if it’s just for chocolate and single life.
More of an understated track, Lost It may get neglected in favour of tunes like T-Shirt Weather, Stuck in My Teeth or My Love, but it’s most definitely worth a mention. The band boasts how much fun their music is and that all they want to do is “try to be a good rock and roll band”, so the slightly more steady-paced and thoughtful Lost It really is a stand out track. Somehow I can see a 2011 Vaccines influence seeping through with a dash of Weezer, giving the track a bit more meat than the other ones. The lyrics give you the emotional baggage necessary for your nostalgic daydreams out the window as you journey back home from summer travels, Lost It on full volume in your headphones and a single tear in your eye.
For all those who struggle with lyrics, the song that was good enough to sacrifice its name for the album’s title has a 10-beat woohoo pattern that will make it pretty hard to forget. Rejoice! Combining a sufficiently outgoing and karaoke worthy chorus and some more toned-down verses which really bring out the infectious twang in lead singer Kieran Shudall’s vocals, Young Chasers really actually does a pretty good job of representing the album. It’s a song best listened to in an array of situations: Karaoke, festival, house party or on stage as part of a Circa Waves tribute act (too far?) this is one to be enjoyed by imitation and repetition, so sing those woohoos with all your friends until there’s nothing left,
Stuck in My Teeth
Not dissimilar to T-Shirt Weather, this track has the same ‘we’re a gang of british teenagers just walking down the street having a good time; vibe which makes it just as catchy, but risks being too similar and maybe forgotten after the initial thrill of a new song has worn off. The verses allow us once again to appreciate Shudall’s voice alone, which will put a smile on your face if nothing else. If you’ve had enough of walking down the street with your gang after T-Shirt Weather, take this track on a bike ride. Endless opportunities, honestly.
A very brief 8 beats of an introduction before shouting loud and clear, So Long is a farewell (the clue is in the name, duh). It focuses on brotherhood over romantic love, which is always a welcome change and feels like a song on which to close a chapter. Be it a relationship, a toxic friendship or simply a summer full of adventures, So Long gives you that last push, the vocals, guitars and beats you’ll sing along to, before you’re ready to move on, or at least listen to another album…Listen when your brother from another mother and yourself are having a moment.
All in all, it would be a lie to say that this album is groundbreaking, original or even extremely varied from song to song. However, it does what it says on the tin, and if like myself you are an indie-rock enthusiast who doesn’t mind listening to another variation of the same recipe, then you are in for a great time. Their take at an overexposed genre adds another page to the 21st century 20-something “this is rock and roll” book, but at least it is a good one. Circa Waves, we salute you.
Follow Ella Kemp on twitter: @Ella_Kemp