whyohwhy
Bruises


4.0
excellent

Review

by Sunnyvale STAFF
February 21st, 2024 | 27 replies


Release Date: 02/16/2024 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Don’t ask why, ask whyohwhy not?

It’s strange how much you can miss about a piece of music upon first listen. Perhaps that’s a funny thing to say at the beginning of a review for an album which came out about a week ago, but it feels right. Czech band whyohwhy’s debut LP first entered my eardrums quite recently, to a muted initial reaction of “hey, this is kinda pretty”. Since that time, I’ve felt myself drawn back to it time after time, and my sense of the album’s quality has bloomed more and more.

Perhaps Bruises is an easy album to overlook. Built upon a delicate foundation of slow-paced dream pop, moody slowcore, and sparse folk, the music is rather accessible on a surface level, but delicate enough in execution that immersion is necessary to fully appreciate its charms. But charms there are a-plenty. Opener “Return” manages to feel both subdued and lush, while sliding flawlessly into a dramatic climax featuring autotuned (no, the good kind, fear not) vocals to great effect. “River Styx”, meanwhile, ups the tempo a bit with a more adventurous musical backdrop while allowing the beautiful reedy singing to shine (the vocals “slaying for days” is a bit of a theme here). Then there’s “Tangerines”, which features almost-dancey guitar work which nonetheless fits into a rather sinister mood.

I mention those three songs in particular mostly so those readers not completely sold can dip their toes in to see what Bruises is about, because all nine tracks here manage to deliver wonderfully upon whyohwhy’s restrained but gorgeous vision. This is a satisfying record which manages to come together as an organic whole while not sacrificing the necessity of tunes which can stand proudly on their own. In short, if you’re wondering whether this album is worth a listen, don’t ask why, ask whyohwhy not?



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user ratings (20)
3.8
excellent


Comments:Add a Comment 
Sunnyvale
Staff Reviewer
February 21st 2024


5916 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Very under-the-radar album which grows and grows and grows - thanks to user someone for bringing this to my attention by posting about it on Dewi's list.



Jespercore alert!

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
February 21st 2024


32047 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

SO happy to see this reviewed, great rec indeed. Somehow I knew you would review it when I saw your rating Sunny, it was either gonna be you or me XD



Very good album, don't miss this one folks.

Sunnyvale
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


5916 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks Dewi! I was glad to see your high score for this as well.

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


60554 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

opener is nice, but lol anyone who can give those perfectly okay autotuned vocal stylings the not-like-the-other-girls treatment needs to be real with themselves about the effect more generally

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


32047 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

*takes notes*



"I have to get real with myself about the effect more generally"

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


60554 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

quickest way to get the stick out of your arse re. use of autotune in pop or rap is to make it 50% through this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0re1BadXc60

Dewinged
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


32047 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0re1BadXc60"



slaps

someone
Contributing Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


6657 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

yay for local representation

someone
Contributing Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


6657 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

also, what exactly is on the cover? i figured part of it is a human back, but there is some beard hair or pubic growth around it or sth. i can't wrap my head around it.

JesperL
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


5485 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

I AM HERE

so stoked to give this a listen hell yeah

TheTripP
February 22nd 2024


4517 Comments


whyohwhy didn't I take the BLUE pill

JesperL
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


5485 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

this is lovely, big dollanganger vibes

someone
Contributing Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


6657 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

That's a great comparison, actually

Sunnyvale
Staff Reviewer
February 22nd 2024


5916 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@Johnny, haha, fair enough. I will say my "tolerance" of autotune has grown over the years, but didn't expect to find it working so well on this type of album (both on the opener and at other points where it's featured).



@someone, no idea what the album art is supposed to portray either.

Zac124
February 22nd 2024


2734 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good album and I am really liking Flood and the folkier elements are really cool and different but I am not so sure what I think about the vocals yet. Still, I can see this growing on me.

someone
Contributing Reviewer
February 24th 2024


6657 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

that average makes me happy

FurtherDown
February 25th 2024


398 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Wow I'm in shock, two days back I was at this album's release gig (tiny club in Prague, about 60 people or so), now I'm sitting here in a new whyohwhy t-shirt and all of a sudden I see Bruises on the sputnik front page? Nice job @someone and thank you for the review @Sunny! They are amazing, I am so happy to see this one of all the local bands to get represented here. Been waiting for the record since River Styx dropped last summer. I wasn't sure about the autotunes either but now I think it is what makes them really unique. Band is super nice too, beautiful and humble people.

someone
Contributing Reviewer
February 25th 2024


6657 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

I missed the release party on Friday, cause I had to work at a different tiny club in Prague. Kinda bummed

FurtherDown
February 25th 2024


398 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

TBH, soundguy in Punctum didn't do a really good job on Friday, but the atmosphere was still magnificent. Hope you catch them next time!

Hawks
February 25th 2024


88308 Comments


Bout 2 jam this so ahrd right now.



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