Brothertiger - Out of Touch - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Brothertiger - Out of Touch

by Nathan Fidler Rating:6 Release Date:2015-12-08

Eighties synth-pop hasn’t been popular for a long time, but it’s been creeping back steadily over the last decade. There have been some knock-out albums which utilise this sound, inflecting it with rock, indie or dance music. The Killers’ only good album, Hot Fuss, was a juggernaut, while Empire of the Sun created songs to bug the airwaves. So why haven’t more people clicked onto this? Brothertiger wade into this sea of uncertain pop.

‘Beyond the Infinite’ has all the glitz and glamour you’d expect of a band emulating 80s pop with a modern twist. Sunkissed and catchy, it’s a promising opening track, everything is well measured and the ending repetition of “Let go of your lying eyes” just about survives.

John Jagos, skills as a producer, shows off an array of skills, from jaunty pop of ‘Wake’ and ‘Out of Touch’ (sadly not a Hall & Oates cover), to the more moody ‘Fall Apart’. But it’s on the slightly more primal ‘High Tide’ where he gets to his best, allowing the song to breathe and not suffocating the listener with the constant hum of the synths. Sustained strums and pipe-like electronics make for nice layering, so much so it would be interesting to hear an acoustic version.

There are missteps all along the way here, with some tracks either passing you by or turning you off due to the aforementioned deluge of constant synth. ‘Upon Viridian Waterways’ has several different textures, like Close Encounter of The Third Kind for the 21st Century, but doesn’t feature that a slick vocal hook to hinge success on.

Many modern bands have taken synths and made gloomy, high-street fashion music, and while Brothertiger seems to lack the conviction of solid lyrics and hooks, there is plenty to appreciate in the soundscapes created compared to those bands. If only Jagos could find his way to teaming up wit TOPS, who managed to hit the right mixture of 80s influence and indie-rock with Picture You Staring.

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