Monday, 21 March 2011

Album Review : football, etc. - The Draft

Whether or not the origins for naming their band football, etc. (a pretty strange name) had anything to do with emo heroes American Football, these three youngsters from Texas do sound an awful lot like that band (which broke up after just one acclaimed album over a decade ago). And I mean that in a good way. So yes, football, etc. are an emo band then, but don’t let that put you off giving them a listen. This isn’t the kind of brazen, modern day emo that involves guy-liner, angsty moaning or big budget MTV videos. This is the kind of loveable emo that label Deep Elm regularly pushed out 10-15 years ago, the kind of emo these days referred to as melodic-emo.

The Draft’ is football, etc.’s first proper album – having released their debut EP and a split 7” with Empire! Empire! in 2009 – and was recorded with onetime Flaming Lips collaborator, Trent Bell. The production quality isn’t out of this world, but the low budget sound actually adds some charm to this record – if you listen back to all those early emo albums, they all shared the same raw production values. All but two songs clock in at under three minutes, and the overall sound is a pleasant mix of the melodic-emo of bands like The Appleseed Cast, the shoegazing indie-pop of The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart, and the post-art-punk of Pretty Girls Make Graves.

Frontwoman Lindsay Minton's guitars throughout ‘The Draft’ are fuzzy and the riffs are predominantly simple and jangly, although there are occasional math-rock elements creeping in (these math elements were much more prominent on football, etc.’s earlier recordings). Her voice is very reminiscent of the vocals of Rainer Maria – a band who football, etc. are often compared to – containing the same kind of off-kilter whine, and a fine whine at that. The highlight of the record? Either the melodrama of ‘Half Time’ – emotional pop-punk that brings to mind The Early November – or the short burst of closer ‘Mouthguard’, which consists of a little technical guitar and bass twiddling, some post-rock riffing and two long, passionate moans.

football, etc.’s debut album is a fairly understated affair, and its success will be quite heavily indebted to the undeniable nostalgic element created from sound-checking those early melodic-emo bands of the 1990s. There is however an addictive sweetness to their recordings that makes ‘The Draft’ a worthy purchase.

football, etc

Football, etc - Sideline by Music Liberation

1 comments:

  1. Definitely one of the best bands around today.

    ReplyDelete