Second album from Daughter, the slightly-ethereal, thoroughly-melancholic indie trio. They’ve been away for 3 years, and the time has allowed them to hone their frosted sound to a fine, sharp point: Not To Disappear is sincerely sad in sound and in words, but manages to avoid becoming maudlin. Out on 4AD.
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I was the most cynical man in the world when it came to Daughter’s debut ‘If You Leave’. I felt it was far too scrubbed and calculated to be actually affecting. Forty five seconds into ‘New Ways’ which opens their much anticipated second album I’m starting to think I underestimated them - Elena Tonra is doing her best Bat For Lashes impression and the guitars are minimal and fold around a nice simple programmed beat….but……but they have to do the bloody grandiose climax don’t they?. Horrid guitars leap in to distort the peace and it takes them a good few minutes to find their place in the track which has now become something very different. After an ill thought out breakdown everything comes back in spades and although I’m enjoying listening to guitars twirls around themselves I’m convinced that Daughter have got stuck and have replaced melodic ideas with far too much debris.
Again Daughter’s melancholy just doesn’t convince - especially on ‘Numbers’ where the sadness feels phoned in. There’s a nice pummelling drum beat over the verses but I’m finding the whole thing too busy to get inside my craw. When Daughter hold back as they do on the verses of ‘How’ they work really well but those guitars that scream Coldplay are always waiting around the next corner.
The strange thing about Daughter is that they are a stadium band dressed up as a slow core band. You can tell when their songs always end up sounding more like U2 than Low.
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