Monday, July 4th, 2005
Come In Out Of The Rain
Where I come from (and where I went to university for engineering), a band that called themselves “Engineers” would probably be a couple guys with acoustic guitars who, in between covers of The Tragically Hip (or cover, singular, because they only ever bothered to learn “50 Mission Cap”) would slip in inspired originals extolling the virtues of boat racing and Labatt 50. I guess in Britain, from whence Engineers come, the word is not loaded down with such baggage. Instead, if the London four-piece has anything to say about it, the word will henceforth connotate immense cathedrals of sound – stately, solemn and beautiful. Not a backwards baseball cap in sight.
Temptations to lump them in with whatever nu-gaze movement is going on at the moment should be avoided, though. While they would certainly appeal to the same sort of eye-contact avoidant fanbase, Engineers draw more from a more atmospheric wellspring of inspiration – more Mark Hollis than Kevin Shields. In fact, sonically their self-titled debut is almost crystalline in its cleanliness. Those seeking walls of fuzz would do well to keep walking. Simon Phipps’ voocals are suitably hushed and dreamy but are mixed well in front so as to still have enough have more weight than you might expect. Only album closer “One In Seven” reaches for any level of bombast, and it’s done quite well – I hope they aspire to produce a more dynamic set with future records. As it is, however, the steady pace and consistent mood feel like a deliberate statement rather than an inability to rock out.
The album was released in the UK in March and in North America at the end of June. Reviews have been quite positive. You can check out some samples at their MySpace page or grab this mp3, courtesy of Insound.
You also get an mp3 of a b-side if you sign up for their mailing list.
Happy Fourth of July to Fourth-Of-July-celebrating people. And happy first- day- back- at- work- after- a- long- weekend to Canadians. Gawd. Since everyone is on holiday, there is pretty much no news to report on. So… go back to sleep. I am.
np – Spoon / Gimme Fiction