Slow Club, “One Day All of This Won’t Matter Any More”

Slow ClubSlow_Club-2016-One_Day_All_of_This_Wont_Matter_Any_More
One Day All of This Won’t Matter Any More
MOSHI MOSHI
6/10

In the decade that Charles Watson and Rebecca Taylor have been making music together as Slow Club, the Sheffield, England duo have graduated from playing somewhat twee and unremarkable indie-folk to something altogether more intriguing. This existentially titled fifth record doesn’t see the pair go full-on Joy Division, but its twelve tracks are certainly marked by a fully formed musicality and a slightly darker edge.

That’s not to say it’s devoid of the pair’s easy-going, lilting jangles. “Silver Morning” is a dose of syrupy romanticism, while consecutive numbers “Rebecca Casanova” and “Tattoo of the King” are both upbeat, ’80s-tinged Fleetwood Mac–style pop/rock that tread the line between pastiche and homage. Both swing with a soulful swagger, but there’s also an element of affectation that, at times, overrides their emotional impact and reach.

Conversely, “Come On Poet” begins with a gently foreboding melody and Taylor’s vocals sounding a little like Patti Smith before exploding in a euphoric burst of sad desperation, while gloomy opener “Where the Light Gets Lost” is a beautifully lugubrious and forlorn pop song. Elsewhere, the broken-hearted minimalism of “The Jinx”—a tender, sorrowful farewell song full of regret that bursts and blooms with the promise of escape as it reaches its crescendo—provides one of the most powerful moments on the record. Oddly, it’s immediately followed by the jaunty chug of “Champion,” which sounds a little like ABBA covering 10,000 Maniacs—or perhaps vice-versa. It probably shouldn’t work, but it does. Just.

Ultimately, One Day All of This Won’t Matter Any More is the sound of a band still trying to find itself, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Under the guidance of Matthew E. White, who produced the record at his Spacebomb Studios, these songs are a confident exploration of different styles and sounds, a mélange of ideas and influences. Ironically, it’s when the pair don’t try so hard that they’re most successful. As such, final song “Let the Blade Do the Work” and the subsequent hidden track show what they’re capable of when they hit their stride, ending the record on a note of graceful, tender beauty. 

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