Saturday, December 04, 2010
Sweeping The Nation Albums Of 2010: Number 37
St Thomas is not a cheery album. You could argue that, being from outside Scotland's twin guitar powerhouse cities out in Dunfermline, The Scottish Enlightenment's default mode of standing alone in cathedral sized soundscapes rather than roaring against the soundwaves is replicated in their circumstances. Whatever, we find David 'not that one' Moyes conducting a particular form of bleakness where guitars and drums reverb around the perimeter rather than through the middle, leaving plenty of space for Moyes' melancholia. It sounds densely packed without ever becoming anything like bombastic or overdriven. Think the deliberate, deliberated slowcore of Low treated with the wistful intensity of Galaxie 500, plus the odd moment of The National creeping intensity, straining at the leash and simultaneously somehow restraining itself from letting go to let the fear creep in from the sides. Meanwhile Moyes is losing his place in the world, examining his self and questioning his faith, philosophically fucked. Don't come expecting crash-bang pop dynamics, but in its care to get every part of the sound correct they've hit on something that lets its unhurried charms build organically while keeping existential angst front and centre.
The First Will Be Last (sorry, only relevant clip on YT at time of writing)
The full list