A STRANGE FACE [IN BLOOM]
10″ / CD / CASS / DL
Spain’s Reed release their first EP, building on their previous two singles, and produce a curious blend of modern postpunk shoegazing wanderings that whet the appetite for a future full-length album.
Reed are a curious prospect on the Spanish circuit. The vehicle for singer/guitarist Curro Gallego-Preciados, the songs on this new EP spiral out like reworked sketches that slowly develop into pieces of beauty. There is a definite eye on the art and the songs are developed in a such a way that they often become layered and textured canvases for his voice, one that at times comes close to a more restrained Jeff Buckley, a vocal that soars and falls over the top, adding another instrument to their mix. Blackish Tree is the clearest example of the five strong tracks on show here to make use of it in such a way.
Elsewhere there are jittery electronics that slowly build in a King Of Limbs Radiohead kind of way. On opener Latte Macchiato, gentle guitar plucking couples with simple beats that prop up a melody that takes its own flight. Little Ghost strips back all elaboration to leave you just with an arpeggio-plucked acoustic guitar and the vocals pushed to the fore. They close off the EP with Venus, possibly the most immediate song of the EP and one that would make Johnny Greenwood proud in the way the guitars chime, break and spit at the same time.
Reed’s influences are quite clear on this EP, but they are also obviously trying to make their own voice heard and they certainly make an excellent go of it. A Strange Face [In Bloom] is a great little collection that encapsulates their sound and lays the path for what will hopefully soon grow into a full-length album.
Listen to Venus from A Strange Face [In Bloom] below:
All words by Nathan Whittle. Find his Louder Than War archive here.