SOMETIMES ALL YOU need is a hearty pop record, with songs about love and jollies by the seaside, to remind you of when you were 17 and a half, and discovering that there’s life beyond the big hair and forced electronica of the Top 40.
Cosines’ debut album, Oscillations (Fika recordings), is that kind of record, full of layered harmonies, marimba jives, Roland synths, and a love of Love, The Loves and early era Charlatans.
They’re a band based around a nucleus of Simon Nelson and Alice Hubbley whose fates met over a blocked kitchen drain. They’re joined by Daniel Chapman, The Late Jonny Drums (aye, that’s correct) and Kajsa Tretow, all with form from previous ardently indie bands in London, England.
Oscillations is ostensibly about wrong-turns in love, unrealistic crushes, unstable relationships and the inevitability failure of it all.
There’s a theremin, an autoharp, and a Moog; Lookout Mountain Drive is effervescent and delightful, featuring, golly gosh, a marimba for that back to music lesson at primary school feel. That cover isn’t a child drawing some lines, it’s a mathematical equation.
It’s split into two halves, as it were, Side X being the more sprightly with the pulsating Out of Fire, and the disco-pop anthem More Than A Feeling, but, while Side Y contains some nuggets, the momentum droops a bit.
Sure, Oscillations brings comparisons to Stereolab, for its usage of relatively obscure instrumentation but when the fuck did the ‘lab ever write any tunes or any songs that was devoid of endless repetition?
It’s the Scottish indie bands first release in a quarter of a century, and arrived at Porky Towers, rather curiously, a couple of days after I rediscovered their two classic late-80s albums, Foxheads Stalk This Land and Headache Rhetoric.
Now Time and New York City In Space are both classic Lobsters, pop sensibilities mingling with the post-punk influences they were exposed to in the pre-C86 days; it’s the sound of Postcard Records meets The Fall.
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