Spanish Love Songs

Giant Sings The Blues

Written by: TL on 10/08/2016 14:59:02

So here's a review that's well overdue and potentially pointless.. To be fair it's not easy to always make timely discoveries of promising new punk rock bands from halfway around the world.. But you get to read anyway, about Spanish Love Songs, a quartet from Los Angeles who, contrary to the name, do not sing in Spanish, nor sound particularly romantic, more so pissed, weary and overall disillusioned with the state of life.

Their debut album "Giant Sings The Blues" came out this February, and on it, they deliver a selection of tracks that bear strong resemblances to The Menzingers and Captain, We're Sinking: Here's fast-paced, rumbling punk-rock with an atmosphere of bitterness and self-conscious self-depreciation, sort of like if you put Conor Oberst' Bright Eyes lyrics to his noisier music with Desaparecidos. Admittedly, "Giant Sings The Blues" is not quite a "Chamberlain Waits", although the similarity is readily apparent - for that it still has a noticeable drawback in rushing straight ahead a bit too much. It's more like an Off With Their Heads record in that sense: Finer points be damned, it's about rumbling on and yelling your sadness out, simple as that for the most part.

Across the standard version's ten tracks, you get to feeling - especially on the first half - that this is primarily what's holding the band back for now. There are moments that catch on but the songs don't stand apart quite strongly enough. As you make it through the tracklist, the promising parts get better, though. "Concrete" is a great single at track three, which you only need to hear once or twice to appreciate the imminent qualities of, and "Vermont" probably most clearly outlines just how much of a sad bastard record this is, with lyrics like: "You can drop me at the hospital, I'll OD on morphine and dream about you, as my heart seizes one more time before you go and go. And I'll probably wake up alone, and be alone forever, with an itch on my back that I cannot scratch, in the shape of your heart forever. 'Cuz everybody leaves, everybody leaves eventually..". Yikes!

A bit later "Stranger" marks another high point of the record with small touches that bring to mind Manchester Orchestra and impressions of what you'd want more of from the songs for them to stand apart some more. The acoustic closer "Bright Day" is instantly recognisable after a listen or two as well, and "Paper Cut" from the extended version on Spotify has an impactful beginning that makes you wonder why it isn't on the standard version.

In any case, "Giant Sings The Blues" sounds like a record from a bunch of nobodies bristling with raw qualities, the kind which remind you of the current greats of underground punk rock and makes you wish people around them will encourage to hone their craft and make something of their band, so we can get to check out an improved version of this potential in the not too far future.

Download: Concrete, Stranger, Vermont, Paper Cup
For The Fans Of: Captain, We're Sinking; Off With Their Heads; The Menzingers

Release date 12.02.2016
Wiretap Records

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