Fjord Rowboat

Under Cover Of Brightness (independent)


Rating: NNN


Can we appreciate a revivalist shoegaze album now that the scene has finished celebrating itself? For Fjord Rowboat’s sake, let’s hope so. On their second album, the local outfit again fix their sights on early 90s England, delivering a disc heavy on atmospheric guitar and wistful, detached vocals.

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Unlike those of nu-gazers M83 and shoegaze pioneers My Bloody Valentine, the vocals aren’t submerged below the soaring, reverbed guitars, instead floating hazily above them. Reminiscent of Catherine Wheel, Rowboats’ towering noise workouts offer more texture than focus, allowing the band’s minor-key pop sensibilities to grab the spotlight more often than not.

Most tracks follow a peak-valley formula that initially plays like a study in contrasts but eventually grows monotonous. Although a little variety would be appreciated, this is still a nice slice of earnest throwback post-punk.

Top track: We Both Know

Fjord Rowboat play the Horseshoe Saturday (June 5).

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