Album Review: Kagoule – Strange Entertainment (Alcopop! Records)

Nottingham trio Kagoule are pleased to reveal their forthcoming second LP, Strange Entertainment, which is set for release on October 26th 2018 on Alcopop! Records.

“We always felt this pressure early on to decide what type of band we were going to be and this record is an exercise in our self-confidence as a band by being all of them at once,” comments front man Cai Burns. “We think we’ve written an album that doesn’t have a direct comparison in guitar music. Lyrically, I think this album is much more mature. I’ve found myself writing songs as a healing process for certain events or to capture moments that I don’t want to forget. I still mask them in fantasy for the fun of it but the topics of each song are more personal and the lyrics far more direct.”

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What an unusual listen Strange Entertainment is, the eclectic mix of pop and indie-rock is certainly not going to be to everyone’s taste. The off-kilter rhythm and vocals of Egg Hunt is distracting but oddly comforting too thanks to a more energetic chorus.

Consistent early on, the shape of tracks like Bad Saliva, It’s Not My Day and Superhuman looks smooth but run your hands over them and you’ll find intricate bumps and gaps that when pushed open this up into something truly special.

Too New Too Soon is a favourite though, thanks to the simplified bassy rhythm and excellent duel vocal performance. Balance is an aptly titled name as this is a near-perfect blend of everything odd and catchy about Kagoule.

While it is an inspired album, it’s not without fault though. There is a distinct lack of bite coming from the vocals. It means tracks like Monsieur Automaton and Magnified have instruments moving at one pace while the vocals are at another. It makes the tracks sound disjointed and not that enjoyable to listen too.

By time we reach the penultimate track, you’re kind of hoping it will wrap up soon as the initial interesting elements are beginning to sound a bit samey. It also ends on a flat note in Strange Was the Time, a track that just comes across a bit bland.

It’s a shame because for at least half this album, Kagoule really had something going on.

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Kagoule – Strange Entertainment Full Track Listing:

1. Egg Hunt
2. Bad Saliva
3. Too New Too Soon
4. It’s Not My Day
5. Superhuman
6. Monsieur Automaton
7. Magnified
8. Balance
9. Repent! Said The Insect Man
10. Strange Was The Time

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You can order the album now via Alcopop! Records here. You can also listen to previously released songs over on Spotify, Deezer, iTunes, Google Play and via Apple Music below as well as pick up earlier releases on Bandcamp. Find out more/keep up to date with news by liking their Facebook Page, Twitter and Instagram.

Kagoule - Strange Entertainment (Alcopop! Records)
  • 6/10
    The Final Score - 6/10
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