Bright Spark Destroyer - Holy Yell EP
Record Label: Self-released
Release Date: June 17, 2010
Bright Spark Destroyer are a British quintet that plays cerebral, mid-tempo indie-rock. Holy Yell is their debut EP and is comprised of self-described "experimental pop songs." The disc was produced by Jordan Fish at Studio 91. All songs were written by James Ellis.
How is it?
Terrific. Is it the water or something? Why is it the number of terrible British bands is minimal while the number of horrid American outfits is pages long. Whatever it is that explains this pattern, Bright Spark Destroyer only continue the trend. On their debut EP the band marries nuanced guitar work with accessible choruses and ruminative verses. Vocalist James Reed has a chirpy voice that quavers and sways with each utterance.
Opener "The Dead Sea Scrolls," begins gently with winsome guitar work and Ellis' highly memorable vocals. The second he starts singing "A small hole in a fish bowl, see the levels start to drain," it's the sound of something special unfolding by the second. And so it begins. Every vibrant note begs the listener to step forward, to sit down and to pause. And when it ends at the 3:19 mark it feels almost criminal that such a thoughtful, well-constructed composition has come to an end.
Thankfully, the piano-driven "They Already Know," follows and is nothing short of stunning. Ellis' vocals once again rise like a siren and guitars swims through a sea of mid-tempo moodiness and rhythmic luminescence. Much like the opener, when the song reaches its conclusion at the 5:23 mark, there's an urge to hit the repeat button and play it again.
Chiming third track "The Shortest Distance," feels like a hybrid of its predecessors as it marries bubbly pop construction with pensive verses, concentric guitars and airy pianos. The celestial "Unknown Forces," glides along with an effortlessness that seems to belie the band's youth and inexperience. And yet for all the band's exalted moments none are as indelible, charming or gorgeous as the six-minute closer "A Feeling of Health," in which Ellis and his bandmates put their best foot forward. Urgent, impassioned and richly constructed it's a shimmering work from a band far too under the radar.
That this is just a debut certainly means only good things going forward and one can argue the band's next effort might just be the one to push them closer to the limelight. Of course that the band is this good, only means one thing. Once again, another British outfit has come out on top. Is this a surprise at all to anyone?