Aaarrghh turned out to be Aaarth, The Joy Formidable a band from Wales that plays a form of indie rock that I just for reference could compare to Anna Calvi with even louder eruptions and some psychedelic edges or Wolf Alice. Band of Skulls is another good example and let me put in Blood Red Shoes as well.
The band is fronted by singer-songwriter and guitarist Ritzy Bryan with Rhydian Dafydd on bass and Matt Thomas on drums. As eclectic as the artwork is, as eclectic the music. This band is not afraid to show different sides of itself. The opening song attests to this, but also a song like 'All In All'. It starts out ever so soft, modest. Slowly but surely the tension is built up to end in a guitar shredding part that A Place to Bury Strangers would play on a lazy, sunny afternoon. Live it will be earsplitting, undoubtedly.
The contrast with the piano intro of 'Absence' is so huge. Nearly incomprehensible. Until Bryan starts singing and draws me into the song directly. Is this the same singer? Singing so softly, even dreamlike in the harmonies, it seems like someone else entirely. Again The Joy Formidable surprises me, utterly.
With Aaarth The Joy Formidable has delivered an intriguing, but above all good album. The diversity and dynamics add to the sense of overall quality. How the trio is ever to reproduce all this successfully live, I can't tell, but for you to find out. And the dancing part? Certainly allowed, I'm sure.
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