The Moves, 'Sad Eyes'
Info: Today sees the release of the second album from Dublin three-piece The Moves, Negative Space is the follow up to 2013's Human Shield and has been released on the Éire Supply label. Vocals are shared by Paul Maguire and David Banim with programming by Philip Kelly and the album is available digitally, on CD and thankfully vinyl from today in HMV stores, it was recorded, pressed and mastered in Dublin.
There are stacks of bands from Ireland, the U.K. and U.S. releasing competent modern music with its primal foundations based on 80's influences, it's a route that I'm a fan of but often find you are left with 2-3 potential singles and the remaining tracks are either average or middling good, which is fine. The problem is that in today's world of instant gratification and entertainment (I include myself in that) we'll revert constantly to those 2-3 songs and the rest of the album becomes a bit lost.
The Moves, 'Arms to Karachi' (from 2013's Human Shield)
Thankfully this is far from the case on Negative Space, here we have 8 highly listenable and enjoyable tracks with the high standard set on opener 'Gates Wide Open', the pleasure derived from the song remains a constant the whole way through the album. The harmonies work very well here between Banim and Maguire, you're inescapably drawn into the sounds and refined nature of the lyrics, abrupt but delivered with feeling. Following track 'Subterraneans' lays out it's Gary Numan influenced musical style with enjoyable synth sounds in a short but sweet package.
'Zero Summer' is perhaps the most obvious homage to the trio's self-professed influences, there's a dark Tears for Fears tinge to the vocals, like something from Songs From The Big Chair and nice bouncy electronica during the interludes. Proceedings ratchet it up a notch again on 'Sputnik', veering more toward a contemporary and testosterone-induced slice of 90's Mancunian attitude. Above number 'Sad Eyes' is one of the true joys to behold on The Moves' new album, subtle but pointed electro drum-beats with vocals again traversing Tears for Fears ('Shout') and Duran Duran territory, reaching near-80's perfection in my opinion.
Negative Space closes strongly with 'Take Me Back To The Stars', a rolling and uplifting track that displays another string to the band and musics bow, the vibe is serene and laid-back and could easily lead to some body-popping moves and grooves in the right environment. How this band have thus far gone relatively undetected is a bit of a mystery to me which became more puzzling the more I listened to their new release, but I'm not dwelling on it too much, that time is better spent just enjoying what in my view is a really great album from the Dublin band.
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