Big Heart by Ski Lodge (Album)

11 September, 2013 in Music Reviews

Ski Lodge

Fans of the movement back towards heartfelt, achingly catchy indie-pop are in for a treat with Ski Lodge’s ‘Big Heart’

SkiLodgeCoveruring the latter part of the last decade, something wonderful happened in indie music. There was a movement away from the Oasis-aping lad-rock that prevailed among Kasabian and their like, foregone in favour of a move towards the more delicate indie that sprung up around The Smiths and their 80s brethren.

Perhaps inspired by the success of bands like Vampire Weekend, whose Afrobeat-inspired guitar pop bore more than a hint of the appreciation for a forlorn pop melody that Johnny Marr made his own, acts such as Beach Fossils, The Fresh And Onlys, Real Estate and Shimmering Stars demonstrated that the art of crafting delicate pop music was very much alive.

What saw them stand aside from the legions of acts that saw Marr and Morrissey as an altar at which to worship rather than a source of inspiration, was their inclusion of an appreciation for surf pop. It was a mixture of genres that created music that was paradoxically mournful and joyous. The excellent Ski Lodge, led by the aptly named multi-instrumentalist Andrew Marr, can count themselves among the ranks of such wonderful indie-pop revivalists.

Opening with the excellent Anything To Hurt You, Big Heart – the band’s full-length debut – is chock-full of wonderful melodies, aching vocals and soaring guitar lines. Further highlights include the Fresh And Onlys-inspired Looking For A Change, piano-driven closer I Can’t Tell and the jaunty You Just Can’t Stop Being Cruel.

Anyone with an appreciation for sensitive, yet achingly catchy indie-pop will find more than enough to enjoy in the brilliant 11 tracks on Big Heart, which continues nicely down the path that was redrawn by Beach Fossils, Real Estate et al.

Verdict: Forlorn, Smiths-inspired indie-pop

Damien Girling