The Sunshine Underground – The Sunshine Underground
Nu Rave was declared dead by NME in mid 2008. It got its name from its fans; with their glow sticks and neon attire they resemble ravers from the previous decade. This genre was largely fueled by Klaxons when a joke of theirs got out of hand and the term “nu rave” was all over media. It went so far that they banned all glow sticks from their gigs to disassociate themselves from the term. Two of the big names on this scene – Klaxons and The Sunshine Underground – are set to release albums this year. Do they have what it takes without the hype? Klaxons will prove themselves when their new work lands in June, for now we only have The Sunshine Underground to scrutinise.
The self-titled album was released just this month, and here the band have developed a taste for a more electronic sound. The songs breathe a kind of melancholic happiness with simple sound aesthetics, giving the album an amphoral dash. The album opens with the song Start, a beat-oriented minimalistic tune with heavy influences from LCD Soundsystem. Craig Wellington’s vocals superposes the spine of muted synth chords and funky beats that smoothly transits to Finally We Arrive that very much has that Klaxons-vibe to it, with unison reverbed male voices in the choruses.
Battles and Here Comes the Storm – the songs with the most character and soul – are where The Sunshine Underground are at their best, creating an interesting architecture in the otherwise predictable album. If this record had been released before the so-called death of nu rave it would have been a massive hit, but now it feel like a remnant of those neon days. It is in itself a pretty good album, but not many songs manage to feel timeless.
The Sunshine Underground was released on 19th May 2014, for further information or to order the album visit here.
Watch the video for Finally We Arrive here: