Recently the UK has not exactly been short of indie bands dealing in synth-heavy modern rock. Amid heavyweight new releases from Foals and Everything Everything, perhaps we should take a chance on the much less well-known Post War Years’ Galapagos. Opener ‘All Eyes’ is a proggy, mid-tempo slow burner which launches itself into an epic instrumental chorus with a screeching hook. Immediately after this the pace of the record shifts, as singles “The Bell” and “Glass House” provide two outstanding pieces of danceable synth-led rock which Delphic wish they were still making.
The band’s experimentation with sound really pays off, and one of the main draws of Galapagos is the level of detail; repeated listens will reveal more and more bizarre hums and fizzes underneath these catchy pop songs. On ‘Growl’ gliding bass lines intertwine as a dark atmospheric haze, which permeates the whole album, creates a cavernous ambiance around the band’s melodies, and leaves the listener feeling immersed in the sounds of the world the band creates on Galapagos. The glitchy synth noises complement rather than smother the songs, making this a much more involving listen than many contemporary releases. The band’s willingness to try writing songs with different tempos means that this record is varied throughout, not slowing down as the record reaches its end, though at times the melodies become repetitive.
The band still has some growing to do, and only time will tell whether they lives up to their potential, but for now Galapagos is an outstanding second album, with which Post War Years prove that they are more than capable of holding their own alongside their more established peers.
Words: Jake Maiden