"...the most ambitious number of all is the three-part break up piece ‘Je Voulais Te Dire’ a 7-minute mini epic containing a slow burning start, a dissonant angry middle, with the end fizzling out somewhat appropriately".
Plants and Animals have been making music together since school and are one of those many bands bubbling under without really managing to crack the big time, all the more surprising when you sample the terrific tunesmithery evident in ‘Waltzed in from the Rumbling’ released on Secret City Records, after which you’re very likely to be, like myself, shortly stampeding towards the band’s back catalogue where all manner of other gems exist.
Like other Canadian trios before them, Warren Spicer (Vocals/Guitar), Nic Basque (Guitar/Vocals) and Matthew Woodley (Drums/Vocals) have managed to generate a rich expansive feel to their recordings that belies their numbers, the strings and keyboards beefing-up proceedings nicely on ‘We Were One’, being a classic example, the tune increasing in grandeur throughout, also a testament to Warren’s production skills on this record.
We get echoes of fellow countrymen Arcade Fire in the terrific groover ‘No Worries Gonna Find Us’ one of many left-field influences on this fine record , the woozy 73-second instrumental interlude ‘Fata Morgana’ then throwing us a real curve ball as we’ve no idea where we’re heading next. ‘Stay’, and ‘So Many Nights’ are both songs containing two halves, the latter followed by the deliciously downbeat ‘Flowers’, also boasting a ton of other stuff going on in the background, without overdoing things. The listener is also treated to a definite post rock feel in places, no more than on the fine slow builder ‘All of the Time’, yet the most ambitious number of all is the three-part break up piece ‘Je Voulais Te Dire’ a 7-minute mini epic containing a slow burning start, a dissonant angry middle, with the end fizzling out somewhat appropriately.
‘Waltzed into the Rumbling’s closing trio starts with the more skittish but no less entertaining ‘Off the Water’ some choppy indie guitar for once giving things a welcome DIY feel. Warren’s languid vocal then comes to the fore in the too cool ‘Johnny is a Drummer’ one of the album’s more laid back moments, whilst the very best is saved for last as the band close things out with ‘Pure Heart’, a road trip to soft rock heaven and arguably a song a certain Mr Wallinger would kill to have written, as all of a sudden, we’re driving into the sunset along the Pacific Highway sat behind the wheel of a convertible.
Words Mike Price
Plants And Animals official
Waltzed In From The Rumbling is out now on Secret City Records