Cambridge, UK art rock band's outstanding sophomore album! Four days before the highly-anticipated release of their follow-up to For the First Time, Black Country, New Road announced that they’d no longer be a septet – lead singer Isaac Wood had left the group. While this may have come as a shock to the group’s cult-following, listening to Wood’s lyrics throughout Ants From Up There, it becomes clear that the record was intended to be his breakup album with the group. Wood references a dying relationship with “Concorde,” a style of supersonic jet that was discontinued in the early aughts. On the third track, Wood sings “but for less than a moment we'd share the same sky, and then Isaac will suffer, Concorde will fly” a line that perfectly captures the undertone of the album (for the band to continue and grow, Woods needed to leave). After all, the band’s sound has changed drastically since their debut, leaving behind many post-punk tropes to shift towards chamber-pop a la Arcade Fire’s Funeral. The Montreal indie-rock group’s influence comes through heavily on tracks “Chaos Space Marine,” “Good Will Hunting,” and the closer “Basketball Shoes.” Scattered throughout the album there are also hints of Klezmer, a genre of Jewish folk music studied by some of the members. Ants From Up There is by-far the group's most accessible work, and while it may be the end of the first era of the group, they are still pushing their sound forward with their latest release Live at Bush Hall.
- sophomore full-length from British 7-piece Black Country, New Road
- black double vinyl pressing
- housed in gatefold sleeve w/ lyric booklet
- digital download included
- music label: Ninja Tune 2022
reviewed by SHH! 05/2023