Admiral Fallow – Boots Met My Face (Lo-Five Records)

album cover Admiral Fallow Boots met my face e1307261218534

There aren’t many new ‘indie/rock’ records that open with a delicate clarinet melody anymore, but this excellent debut from Glaswegians Admiral Fallow does. And when followed by this glorious line – You sleep like a kid with one hand stuck fast to the side of your face. Backside in the air, mouth half open, but still filled with grace.” from frontman Louis Abbot, you’ll probably fall for them within the first minute of opener ‘Dead Against Smoking’. There has been a steady groundswell of enthusiasm for this band, and support slots with the likes of Avi Buffalo and a smattering of festival appearances will do them no harm at all.

 

But this debut record, pulled together over three years, gives Admiral Fallow a brilliantly crafted foundation to base their assault on our hearts and ears on. The songs hang on Abbot’s droll brogue, recounting details of playful childhood and painful loss, coloured with minute observations, as on ‘Subbuteo’ – “There are bangers in the wheely bins, Lazer pens shone through the glass, And BB after BB fired, From behind the wall beyond the grass“. The tunes are well arranged and make use of a wide palate of instruments, and they even dabble with a country-fied feel on the energetic ‘Taste The Coast’.

 

The band cite acts like Elbow, Midlake and Radiohead as influences, and throw in a hefty dose of Celtic folkishness to that mix and you have something approaching their sound. They don’t sound like Guy Garvey and co. directly, but share their knack for big, memorable choruses offset with a certain northern melancholy. The stunning ‘Delivered’ leaves Abbott largely alone with a reverb-drenched guitar, going through memories of a hospital visit with sobering clarity. ‘Old Balloons’ builds gorgeously from slight piano and guitar to and all-out punky re-imagining of its own chorus that recalls and matches Arcade Fire at their flat-out best.

 

This is a remarkable debut record, full of confidence and potency. Some feel that Admiral Fallow were unfortunate not to get a Mercury Prize nod, and its hard to disagree with any conviction. This is an album that deserves recognition, hence why we at GIITTV Towers felt it deserved a full review. Get on it.

 

[Rating:4.5]

Release Date – 21/3/2011

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.