Speak, Brother - Young & Brave

Published Monday 26th March 2018
Speak, Brother - Young & Brave
Speak, Brother - Young & Brave

STYLE: Roots/Acoustic
RATING 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 168930-26557
LABEL: Independent

Reviewed by Tim Holden

To be released on 13th April, this is the eagerly awaited debut full-length album from the Coventry-based folk rockers and is the climax to a number of years building their reputation on the indie circuit and it shows the time has been well spent. The band's songwriting is lyrically expressive which is then combined with stunning anthemic arrangements to produce songs that grab the attention and insist on more than one listen. Starting with James' plaintive vocals over a synth pad "Magnificent" soon explodes into the powerful opener it is and sets the scene for the rest of the album, with complex rhythms, time signatures, full arrangements with soaring guitars and twanging mandolins perfectly entwined to form a captivating soundscape. The use of harmony vocals and choirs - the climax of "Pond Boy" for example - is clever and well used, always adding to the depth of vocal delivery and adding punch when the lyrics demand it, particularly the chorus to "Magnesium Burn" and the use of a female vocal duet on "Father". Quieter songs such as "Two Bands Of Gold" and "Empire" are handled just as well as the full bore such as the stunning "Lions Roar". The rich arrangements, excellent production, evocative lyrics and passionate delivery give this album that nudge into the "here is something great" category. Don't expect overtly God lyrics - this is all about the world seen through the eyes of those who know God - but do expect something that is wholesome, uplifting and that will be on repeat for years - it really is that good.

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