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echo lake-wild peace cd (slumberland)

Price: $13.99

slr174cd

echo lake: wild peace

Echo Lake formed late in 2010 after Thom Hill and Linda Jarvis met studying at art school in South London. The ex-choir-girl’s voice perfectly suited Hill’s Brian Wilson-meets-Galaxie 500 productions and they set about work on a new project. A songwriting and recording duo (fleshed out to a five-piece for rare live dates), the act was picked up by cult London label No Pain In Pop and the resulting, acclaimed debut EP Young Silence quickly caused a press feeding frenzy. Fourteen months later and debut album Wild Peace is a considered, singular work brashly proving right all the hype. Marrying Hill’s huge, dense production style with countless interweaving layers of Jarvis’s emotive and cavernous voice, the tracks seem to float like the densest of mirages, maintaining a majestic indie-rock classicism. It’s a uniquely direct and committed take on the melodic side of psychedelia’s pop frontier; the sound of a band flying close to the sun with just their debut release. “Further Down” is a meticulous introduction to the record; the perfect balance Jarvis’s vengeful whispers with a controlled and tuned aggression, which could be a description of the group as a whole. Early single “Another Day” is straightforward classic British guitar pop track, with Hill’s joyous guitar lead spiraling over rising vocals and building up to a frenetic climax. “Wild Peace” is a swooning organ and string-led ballad set to soundtrack a lost prom waltz, the widescreen chorus summoning up hazy memories of Kim Gordon’s cooings on “Shadow of a Doubt,” latter-day Beach House and endlessly spinning mirror balls. The early-Arcade Fire immediacy of “Even the Blind” is the album’s boldest point: a shimmering affirmation of hope and self-belief in a decade of interesting times. Closers “Swimmers” and “Just Kids” give hints of beach-combing Real Estate pop, the atmospheric shoegaze of Cocteau Twins and Spiritualized, and a dash of Britpop attitude. In their essence, they display the uniqueness of a young band emerging fully formed, rapidly honing their many influences with supreme confidence.


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