Tuned In To Music

Reflections from a lifetime

Review: Ambulance LTD, New English (EP)

Ambulance LTD’s 2004 album, LP (which I have not heard as of this writing), is often described as an amalgam of shoegaze-style guitar layering and effects with elegant vocal harmonies.  For their most recent EP New English they’ve stripped away the electric guitar effects and kept the harmonies producing a short set of fine pop/rock that is long on hooks and melody and short on histrionics.  The title track even uses acoustic rather than electric guitars.  It also rests on a countryish on-the-backbeat rhythm that would normally lead me to think “Oh, noes!  Hee-Haw!” but the band saves the song with lovely harmonies and a non-country attitude. They haven’t completely forgotten about electric guitars as the heavy, fuzzed bassline that fronts “Sugar Pill” attests but the stress here is on accompanyment rather than effects.  Think Ivy’s sophisticated songwriting without Dominique Durand’s vocals.  “Arbuckle’s Swan Song” has an irresistable chorus that almost demands that you learn the lyric and sing along.  Sound quality is good and remarkably consistent given that the EP includes two demos, a live version of Pink Floyd’s “Fearless” and four other tracks all recorded at different places and mixed by different people.  New English is the kind of EP that makes me both look forward to their upcoming album and want to find their previous one.

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02/05/2007 - Posted by | CD reviews, music

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