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2020 continues to provide us with a never-ending (thus far) indie wave. Into their seventh year of existence, UK outfit Blossoms are back with a new LP entitled Foolish Loving Spaces, their third overall following 2016’s Blossoms and 2018’s Cool Like You. Having already achieved several sell-out shows and acclaim from the British media and music establishment, Blossoms come into Foolish on a streak of momentum that will only continue to build, provided they play their creative cards right.
No time is wasted getting started: “If You Think This Is Real Life” abruptly launches into uppy pop fare with an 80s inclination, vocalist/guitarist Tom Ogden riding smoothly over the abundantly percussed composition with keyboardist Myles Kellock providing the appropriate bursts and beds. “Your Girlfriend” moves into a catchy groove, driven forward by an infectious bassline courtesy of one Charlie Salt- a fun tune for all except whoever the poor bloke is having to deal with the likes of Ogden potentially honing in. “The Keeper” screams Beatles, or at least McCartney off of the piano alone, eventually expanding into a full and happy tune with a rousing backing choir and finely blended electro-textures worked into the mix by Kellock.
“My Swimming Brain” pulls a couple plugs out and tosses in an acoustic guitar for the song to coalesce around, showing a capacity for dynamics and the ability to be more indie than pop when it suits (or the other way around). “Sunday Was A Friend Of Mine” gallops and grooves along and dives deeper into danceability, further highlighting the band’s penchant for smooth, melodic and memorable choruses all the while. “Oh No (I Think I’m In Love)” continues on the strength of rhythm and hooks, while “Romance, Eh?” lightens up slightly, steering towards more of the euphoric feeling of a genuine, serendipitous connection rather than the hormonal wash of adolescent dance floor lust.
“My Vacant Days” cuts the drums and keeps it simple, focusing in hard on melody and harmony and utilizing them to the most colorful extent possible. “Falling For Someone” shifts back to more of the anthemic poppiness present in the earlier tracks on the album, keeping things straight forward and heavy on the hooks. “Like Gravity” rounds out the affair on a longer and more rocking note, nevertheless it sticks to the winning formula demonstrated throughout: groove it out, sing it up and texture it well. It’s a clear working method that allows for bending and flexibility while not breaking the core and one that will ensure continual acclaim in the future.
Foolish Loving Spaces sticks within the bounds of love, life and all sorts and manners of universal human experience, common themes for pop but nevertheless done in a fresh, clever and catching way. While Blossoms are effectively forward in their approach, the few nods to the past they happen to make (early 80s pop/new wave, on one hand, late 60s Beatles pop on the other) demonstrate both a debt to their British forefathers and a hard shot of proof that British pop is alive as it’s ever been; continuing on a conscious current over the decades. Under different sounds and different names, the song remains the same– and it can only continue to get better.
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