Exploded View

Exploded View album

Halfway through listening to debut single ‘No More Parties In The Attic’ a few months back, it was apparent Exploded View were about to become my new favourite band. UK-born Anika’s deep and languid vocal style is mesmerising, over infectious, groovy baselines and trance-inducing beats. Their sound conjures images of the ‘All Tomorrow’s Parties’ late 60’s New York art/music scene, with a nod to Portishead.

Exploded View formed while Anika was rehearsing for a show in Mexico in March 2014, with the 3 locally based producers Martin Thulin (drums/guitar), Hugo Quesada (Bass/synth) and Hector Melgarejo (synth/guitar). Together, they revel in the live, improvised performance and this album very successfully showcases their combined talents, in that respect.

The superb ‘Orlando’ followed the first single, increasing my anticipation of the debut album to fever pitch – shimmering, reverb-laden synth sounds float over another groovy baseline and a relentless minimal drum beat. The shape and delivery of Anika’s lyrics complement the instrumentation perfectly, often supplying unforgettable refrains to sing along to and repeat to yourself.

The album regularly reaches the peaks attained by the first two releases, even during the slower tracks such as ‘One Too Many’, ‘Stand Your Ground’ and ‘Killjoy’, culminating in a very satisfying and complete long-player experience. ‘Gimme Something’ is another personal favourite – again, the bassline is simple and just doesn’t quit. “Gimme gimme something you know I want…”. The band cut loose here, increasing the tempo, allowing the guitarist and drummer to get carried away.

Opening track ‘Lost Illusions’ perfectly prepares you for all of this, with a deep rumbling sound, almost like a didgeridoo, over a cymbal-heavy rhythm. “Illusion… illusion…. illusion”. 3 or 4 minutes aren’t enough for these songs, they leave you wanting more and reaching for the repeat button – more of the beat and the bass – more laid-back musing from Anika and her distinguishable melancholy style – just keep playing… please.

This album takes you to a calming, cool, thought provoking and slightly dark environment, where creativity and deep reflection are wholesomely encouraged. I’m finding it hard to leave this place.

Release Date – 19/08/2016 (Sacred Bones Records)

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Peter Rea

I like to go see fresh new music at Manchester's superb selection of smaller venues, and then share my enthusiasm.