Review Summary: This sounds familiar in the best way possible.
For people who like a range of genres there tends to be a feeling that goes along with each of them. When I want to relax I turn to post-rock or emo. When I want to blow off some steam I’ll throw on some Poison the Well. For a drive, some heartland Springsteen will certainly do. But what do I put on when I want to enjoy myself and simply be? That is where Inlite comes in. Fitting comfortably in the sounds set forth by The Killers and Franz Ferdinand, Inlite have written a fun, synth-y pop/rock album that is sure to make you move, or at least smile at the thought of it.
Loaded with catchy synth lines, sweet guitar parts, and swooning vocals, “For Future Reference” is to be played for enjoyment. “Common Ground” features the heavy bass, dance-rock beats and guitar melodies that the genre is known for, and they are nicely done. However, the band knows better than to fall into the trap of repetition and recycled sounds that make releases hard to get through after a few songs. “Excuses” features a more mature sense of writing than “Common Ground” but never loses touch with the pop-rock feel with its fantastic chorus or bass and synth-heavy ending. “Ghost” will throw listeners off with prominent guitar in the intro, to the dark atmosphere and well-suited haunting synth effects. The brooding lyrics “Nothing left to hear, except the whispers in your ear” sung in a melancholy way contribute immensely to the tone of the song, creating quite an interesting listen. Closer ‘This Distance” employs all of the band’s previously shown features but adds piano and experimental rock elements to create one of the best bridges you’ll hear.
The band is very adept at song-writing as they stray from conventional song structure and instead opt for a variety of breaks, verses, and interludes. Choruses are as sweet and as catchy as they come though never overstaying their welcome or being repeated to monotony. This is a remarkable feat with some of the tracks extending past the 5-6 minute mark. “Ghost” and “Excuses” never reach a dull point and are always making you look forward to what is going to come next in the song. Additionally, the vocals displayed here are some of the best you’ll hear in the genre. They complement the unconventional guitar playing in the way they stop and start or fade out, which helps Inlite develop their own brand of song-writing. Comparable of course to Brandon Flowers (though without any effects or layering) the vocals are moving and work very well.
Inlite are an interesting listen. They take indie-pop rock and add their own flavor to it. That flavor just so happens to be experimental and diverse, making “For Future Reference” instantly enjoyable and giving it replay value. In the amazing bridge in “Common Ground” the lines “It’s not just where we are, I know that I have seen your face before. It’s not just where we are, I know that I have felt this air before” sum this release up well. Inlite flaunt their influences well, recalling The Killers’ sound from “Hot Fuss”. However, that sound has been tampered with and made their into own. And boy does it work.