Alpine - A is for Alpine
Guest reporter Amanda says despite being a bit samey, Alpine's debut album is sweet, danceable and original.
After only three years in the music industry, six-piece Melbourne band Alpine have thoroughly established themselves within the Australian indie-pop scene.
Since forming in 2009, Alpine have gone on to perform at various venues and festivals around Australia and even America. More recently the band has released their debut album A is for Alpine and taken a whirlwind tour around Australia to promote it.
Listening to A is for Alpine, you can't help but get entranced by the whimsical and harmonic vocals of frontwomen Phoebe Baker and Lou James.
The album starts off short and sweet with two tracks, "Lovers 1" and "Lovers 2", that seamlessly meld together and create a platform on which Alpine can introduce their original style. The second of the two songs is slightly more alluring and creates a great transition into "Hands".
"Hands" is next off the bat. It's also Alpine's hit single, no doubt due to its fast-paced rhythm and danceable beat. It's an eccentric and mysterious song that lures the listener in with sweet breathy vocals.
The theme of difficult relationships continues with "Hands", its central statement being "It's OK/ To feel the rain/ On my hands/ My love, my enemy". "Hands" is without a doubt a most memorable song that will leave you humming it for days.
The melancholy - but somehow upbeat - tone continues on through the album until it reaches "Gasoline", which is a standout of the album with its jaunty guitar riffs and underlying percussion. Mid-song the track shifts and slows down only to be interrupted by occasional breathy enunciations from Baker and James. "Gasoline" is by far the most accessible of the album's songs and, for me, the most enjoyable.
Another standout track is "In the wild", which picks up much where "Gasoline" left off, with similar guitar riffs making their presence known throughout the song.
A steady drumbeat and catchy keyboard tune are thrown into the mix and as a result the song's main appeal is its seemingly chaotic nature. As with "Gasoline", halfway through the song slows down and makes the keyboard its main focus.
Some other memorable tracks in A is for Alpine are "Villages" and "Too Safe", which originally debuted on "Zurich", their 2010 EP.
When listening to A is for Alpine you can't help but get lost in harmonic wonder. Times spent running along the beach and driving in the countryside instantly come to mind and you can't help but feel happy listening to it.
Although A is for Alpine maintains Alpine's iconic style throughout the album, this is also its downfall. With many of the tracks being so similar, they simply meld together and become one mega song. This is really evident towards the end of the album.
Aside from this minor issue, though, A is for Alpine is definitely worth a listen.
3.5 out of 5.
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