Islands - Taste - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Islands - Taste

by Rob Jones Rating:7 Release Date:2016-05-13

Islands release their 12-track Taste album and, via their dozen ditties, they mix up a variety of influences. However, there is an overwhelming 80s, 90s and 00s electro-pop feel to proceedings. What springs to mind are segments of acts such as Zoot Woman and Echoboy. The ingredients also absorb a sonic sway towards more accessible chart champions such as Vampire Weekend and Coldplay but then there is a sizeable sprinkling of the angular alt-J electro-pop stance added to the recipe.

This is a record that is laced with déjà vu. This Canadian crew have certainly done their research and scoured the aural annuls in order to deliver. Taste has commercial kudos but within its lyrical and musical content proceedings can get a tad darker.

Is that a fragment of New Order, a snippet of The Cure, a portion of The Rapture, a chunk of Radio 4, a slice of Vangelis, a bit of Jean-Michel Jarre or is that just pure pop in the guise of a Scouting for Girls or Maroon 5?

Nicholas Thorburn of Islands states that these twelve tunes of this record are ‘more electronic’ and ‘buoyed by drum machines, programming and vintage synths’. Taste can be both uplifting and melancholic-but, it is certainly a welcome challenger to the mainstream with an element of the outsider in its mantra. Taste or tasteless?.... It has to be the former as regards this tune tombola! Something for The Weekend? Yes, indeed!

NB Please note that Islands has also delivered a simultaneous album in the form of Should I remain Here at Sea? (And, this set has a different more guitar and drum based feel to display even more variety of an act that are ambitiously promoting their sixth and seventh long players at the same time).

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