Bonfires on the HeathAlbum |
Wispy, dreamy psych-pop.
Over the course of four proper albums (plus two singles compilations and a handful of EPs), The Clientele have perfected what leader Alasdair MacLean jokingly calls "the sound of Young Basingstoke." They're the kind of band that does one thing and does it well; better than just about anyone, in fact. The gentle jangle of wispy, dreamy, ‘60s-influenced psych-pop a la The Zombies and the softer side of Love is The Clientele's stock in trade, and with Bonfires on the Heath, that aesthetic seems to reach its apex. There's a creepy autumnal undertow to MacLean's ethereal musings this time around, which he confesses was the result of a rather momentous acid trip (how very psychedelic!) he experienced shortly before recording the album. Nature itself seems to loom threateningly over these tunes, but never so overtly menacingly as to disturb the band's trademark languid feel, or to bring MacLean's reverb-is-my-religion vocals above their customary whisper. A couple of tracks, like the opening "I Wonder Who We Are," uncharacteristically accelerate the tempo a bit, but for the most part this is The Clientele at their most bewitching.
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