I have some fond memories of bouncing around to Bombay Bicycle Club at Leeds Festival 2011 with friends, so I was quite excited to get my hands on their new album So Long, See You Tomorrow, which shares its name with a classic novel by William Maxwell. It’s due to drop on the 3rd of February, and you should be excited. They’ve not released an album since 2011, but it’s nice to see how much they’ve progressed in this time. So Long, See You Tomorrow, feels less like the usual indie pop they’re often pigeon-holed into, and is more evidence of how they seem to have embraced a love of electronics. This is their most dance-influenced album yet, a total take off from A Different Kind of Fix.
The album was produced in its entirety by lead singer Jack Steadman, and if you’ve not heard any of his solo work you should check it out once you’ve had a listen to this (or maybe while you’re waiting for the album to drop). You can hear his influence on the production completely, and believe me when I say it’s a good thing.
The album opens with ‘Overdone’ initially sounding like the first few notes of a film soundtrack. It’s a great introduction to Steadman’s intense vocal skill, followed up by ‘It’s Alright Now’ and some wonderful harmonies, punctuated by excellent percussion from . Carry Me was released back in November, and hasn’t lost its appeal over the past few months, reminiscent of some old Interpol tracks. It’s the danciest of the album, textured and rhythmic. Lucy Rose features, a long-term collaborator of the band, like many other songs on the LP. ‘Home By Now’ features Lucy’s vocals once again, ‘Whenever, Wherever’ (possibly my favourite track) and its beautiful use of piano slows the pace down somewhat. ‘Luna’ is another single, during which the female vocals of Rae Morris mix well with Steadman’s in a beautiful crescendo.
‘Eyes Off You’ is a rather heart-wrenching song, lyrically. Lucy Rose sings on this one too, and the combination of their voices is perfect. The rest of the album is good and solid, but less remarkable than the first few songs I must admit. ‘Feel’, ‘Come To Me’ and then the album closer, titular ‘So Long, See You Tomorrow’ I think will be growers, needing a few more listens to become memorable.
At times, it feels quite Bon Iver inspired, but perhaps that’s because I hear a bit of Bon in everything. This album would sound great mixed up in a playlist with a bit of Two Door Cinema Club, Tokyo Police Club, Freelance Whales, Alt-J, Animal Collective and maybe Keele favourite Theme Park for good measure.
The album lasts about forty-five minutes long, and to tell the truth – it has been one of the most enjoyable forty-five minutes I’ve had since the last episode of Sherlock (link to JM review). Personally, I’m hoping the buzz for this album lasts long into summer, I can see myself sitting out on the lawns by Keele Hall, listening to these chilled out tunes, relieved after handing in our dissertations. It’s their best album yet.
If you enjoy So Long, See You Tomorrow pop along to one of their upcoming UK tour dates:
Sun 02 March, Leeds O2 Academy
Mon 03 March, Glasgow O2 Academy
Tue 04 March, Aberdeen Music Hall
Wed 05 March, Newcastle O2 Academy
Fri 07 March, Nottingham Rock City
Sat 08 March, Birmingham O2 Academy
Sun 09 March, Norwich UEA
Mon 10 March, Portsmouth Guildhall
Wed 12 March, Bristol O2 Academy
Thu 13 March, London O2 Academy Brixton
Friday 14 March, Liverpool O2 Academy
Sun 16 March, Cardiff Uni Great Hall
Mon 17 March, Exeter Uni Great Hall
Tue 18 March, Brighton Dome
Thu 20 March, Manchester Albert Hall
Reviewed by Amy Tunstall, 17/01/2014.