Review Summary: Wave Your Fingers To Make The Winters is a great EP from who I think are one of Australia’s best new bands.
The Seabellies are a 6 piece band from Newcastle, Australia and are steadily becoming one of Australia's best up-and-coming Indie bands. The release I'm reviewing is their debut EP, and it has arrived on the back consistent touring including an appearance at one of Australia's newest and popular festivals, the V Festival, alongside artists such as the Pixies, The Rapture and Beck.
The band plays a dreamy and spacious brand of music not unlike The Arcade Fire or Mew. They also make use of a wide variety of instruments such as Metallophones, Melodicas and Keyboards to accompany the standard set of Guitar, Bass and Drums. For the recording of the album, The Seabellies have also used a string quartet of two violins, a viola and a cello.
The EP opens on a very strong note, with Drain The Lake's infectiously simple guitar riff at the forefront and howling synths in the background. Singer Trent Grennel's relaxing vocals along with the aforementioned guitar riff are the backbone to what is an excellent song, and is the most catchy and simple song on the record.
The two tracks that follow Drain The Lake show a different side to the band, with the next track being a layered, synthesizer-heavy affair and Our Ghosts Don't Disappear is probably the highlight of the EP, combining electric and acoustic guitars with elegant piano to create a beautifully emotional piece. This track also sees the band take full advantage of the string quartet, adding another layer of colour to the song and it really succeeds in taking the material to the next level.
At the halfway point of the EP, one might expect that from here on in the band (especially one of The Seabellies' age and experience) would have cemented some sort flow or even formula to their music, however the band continue to present songs which vary in their tempo and instrumentation. This is very a positive thing, especially for a band that is planning to record a full-length within the next 12 months. This is something which is also reflected in their live shows, where the all six members are constantly swapping roles.
The one element that is very much the same throughout the EP is the mood of the songs. Each of the six songs on this record contains the same whimsical, dreamy and sometimes intense atmosphere throughout, and at times it makes the EP seem like it drags on longer than it should. It's something that also comes from the fact that the record contains many layers of instruments, and songs that more often than not are quite loud and dramatic, and in doing this the last third of the EP doesn't really give you a chance to catch your breath and take in all that’s happened over the past twenty minutes.
All in all, Wave Your Fingers To Make The Winters
is a highly enjoyable EP from who I think are one of Australia’s most promising new bands. Recommended.