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Okay, in regards to this song I have two words for you: Arctic Monkeys. I then have another five words for you: ‘When The Sun Goes Down’. I mean, the way that this song both starts and ends with a subdued tonality is absolutely in homage to Alex Turners’ urban classic, whether deliberately administered or not. To me the English rock influences scream out from this track, and these echoes of The Calls’ contemporary epitomes could easily overshadow this bright spark of a single.
But, actually, ‘Back In Town’ stands up really well. No, really: it does.
Marcel Haslewood’s bassline predominantly drives the song (followed along by Jon Doyle’s kicking drumbeat) and really fills out the track – arguably a tad too much in terms of the song’s production, but the complexity in Marcel’s part bounces along with finesse and melodic strength.
An octave rise in Tom Fuller’s vocals works very nicely within the final chorus, reinvigorating the track and earning it that final dip of melancholy in the single’s Turner-esque outro. The dulled timbre of Fuller’s voice inhabits the desolate tones invoked by the lyrics, successfully encapsulating verses such as: “my spirits lifted briefly / before sinking oh and they began to drown / in the sorrow of tomorrow’s pain / just going through the motions / and we’re all just waiting for another day”. Seriously, some of these lyrics are as grey as a Glaswegian summer; that’s a lot of vocal monochrome.
For me though, the real quality prevalent in ‘Back In Town’ is Will Johnson’s lead guitar: it’s not something extraordinarily innovative or mind-bending but it skips around the instrumentation with crackling energy, stretching and exemplifying the song’s melody with foot-tapping results.
The band released a music video for the single on the 19th of February (available on their Facebook page – links are at the end of this review), though the single is yet to be released for downloading and streaming. In terms of the video itself, well, what can I say…? It was clearly done on a budget. However it’s good fun, unpretentious and does not in any way diminish the quality of the song, being absolutely worth checking out; similarly, this song is totally worth picking up upon its release with a teensy-tiny slither of your drinking money.
But yes, my overall verdict: ‘Back In Town’ by The Calls is ideal for fans of the Arctic Monkeys, though do note that they have a much less laddish, much more… tactful sound.
Hm… yes. That’s a nice review-ee word. 8/10
You can catch The Calls live at the Fylde heat of this year’s Battle of the Bands competition taking place on the 25th of February. If you miss that though they’ll probably make it to the Sugarhouse final happening before the end of term (I mean, frankly, I’d be a bit shocked if they didn’t), but failing that they will be heading out on an Easter tour starting the 17th of March. There is also an EP on the way entitled Garageland which is released the day after on the 18th, so get it in your diaries!
Now go and find The Calls online: