Release Date: July 11th, 2011
Label: Something Nothing Records
Website: None available
Brighton quintet Goodluck Jonathan look to have a bright future ahead of them. Hotly tipped by the likes of the NME as the next big thing, their sound has seen them become highly lauded in a relatively short space of time, meaning that expectations for their debut full-length, ‘This Is Our Way Out’, are understandably towering.
Being a collection of three previously released EPs, the record, whilst having more than its fair share of solid songs, does bestow a rather gloomy and bleak atmosphere, perhaps because it is an effort, in the band’s words, “to capture and savor every moment, emotion and complexity of our youth”. This is all well and good, but unfortunately it does make for a dreary listen. Songs such as the jangley, shouty ‘Backs To The Wall’ are about as an upbeat as it gets here, which with its infectious aggression and joyous riffing is a breath of fresh air in an album which tends to become terribly monotonous.
The reasons for this are quite clear. The vocals, whilst utilizing a London accent twang which is somewhat endearing, rely heavily on spoken word passages and monologues start to become tiresome after a short space of time. Couple this with the use of some droning synth to accompany them, and the wearisome nature of the songs really does come to the forefront.
Yet, there are some stand out moments on ‘This Is Our Way Out’ which do occasionally display the band’s songwriting talents. The most worthwhile track of the whole affair is ‘Broken Heart’, which impresses with its sheer dynamics, shifting from massive, soaring crescendos to brooding, spoken word passages (an example that these can be done very effectively on occasion). The band could do well to build on this style, as it very successfully melds what Goodluck Jonathan do to the best of their ability.
‘This Is Our Way Out’ does display brief flashes of promise. The problem here is that these glimpses are all to few and far between, meaning that the album has little replay value and few highlight songs to really entice listeners and hook an audience. With some work, Goodluck Jonathan could release something truly exciting, but for now its filed under potential.
Written by Tony Bliss