Welcome, Great Pagans.
All hail, Cupid In Error.
From the start, let's make it clear that I am currently a fool for a band with an emotive, swirling sound that was made to ring out to the rafters.
And is it coincidence that among the many eclectic recording spaces used by this Brighton-based band, they sought sanctuary in a church?
Opening track December not only breathes a coolness of the namesake month, it also walks a highly desired fine-line between recent indie darlings Temples and Teleman, an outpouring of on-trend throwback, slacker psychedelia and an urge to dance at indie-discos to a frenetic upstart melody.
And yet to pin their name and their style too closely to contemporaries would be a fundamental judgement in error when in fact they deeply mine at least five decades worth of British heritage, their oxymoronic timeless-zeitgeist also encompasses shades of nineties Shoegaze, eighties New Wave and dark pop tones, and of course the clear psychedelic calling card harking back to the 1960s and 70s.
It becomes almost impossible to pinpoint the point of origin of this release if hearing it blindly, uninformed by eras, and even beneath the overbearing musical characteristics lays a brit-pop era, kitchen-sink drama approach to real life relationships, carbon-dating becomes an especially more perplexing task as the album progresses.
Great Pagans capabilities and influences flex and grow with each passing minute. Was that Jesus and Mary Chain or Bloc Party? The Smiths or Arcade Fire? Psychedelic groove revivalism or Berlin-era Bowie?
Forget the pigeon-holing, the reference points and the pot-holed review you have before you, fair weather music fans may sneer as I try to put across my multi-faceted point, but habitual music users probably won't even need my recommendation and those that do will hear what I hear...
An inspired band.
A great album, from start to finish.
All hail, Great Pagans.