Sea Pinks – Dreaming Tracks

SPRating: ★★★★½

Sea Pinks are a group from Belfast, whose Bandcamp page touts that they got their start by being “inspired by sea glass, bleached grass and ghost guitars.” That being said, their catalogue, including their incredible most recent full length Freak Waves, adheres to these stimuli. This time around, the band has come out and said it— it’s no coincidence that Dreaming Tracks is called just that.

“Dream Happening” is a killer way to open the album, let alone an album called Dreaming Tracks. There’s this moment of suspense before the band starts with a long drawn out note, and in this brief space that somehow seems like it lasts forever, you are dying, waiting for the band to kick off and get going. When they begin, its like a bath of warmth and light- the guitars are springy and bounce through the tune, while the vocals mirror this effect. The drums are easy, popping along in the background, giving you the perfect head bobbing little rock jam. Here is a wonderful way to begin.

There are some noticeable differences from last go round, mostly in the production of the sound. It seems like there is a clearer quality in this recording—they’ve cut the little bit of fuzz on the guitars and vocals, which makes this album lean more towards the outright jangly rock genre and less so in the camp of garage rock. However, it’s not completely gone from the fuzz, but rather Dreaming Tracks takes things to the detached garage level of jangly rock. This shift is apparent on “Waiting For You (To Go),” in which the guitars cleanly flit and flirt in and out of the percussion, vocals and more cello (who doesn’t love any kind of strings in indie rock?). There’s a certain clean tightness to the guitar work, especially in the breakdown at the end of the track and the freshness does the band good on this album to prevent a replica of their past record.

It’s also very important that the presence of the cello in a lot of the tracks gets noted—simply put that cello pulls me right back in each time I start to wander in the guitar riffs. Take beauty and end track “Invisible Lines” for example, in which the breaks for the string work gives the track an elegance that is totally unexpected for this genre. And yet, it works so well, not only with the jingle jangle, but with deep cutting lyrics as well; the last line of the song is “You’re in the prime of your life/you’re in the dreamtime between worlds.” It’s these little touches that remind you that you’re listening to damn well crafted music here.

Honestly, Sea Pinks can do no wrong by my ears—these last two albums have been spectacular collections of deeply interesting, as well as enjoyable songs. What are you doing still reading this review when you could be jamming? Go listen! GO!


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