Flash Talk came on to the scene a year ago with two videos for their songs Synthesise and Miracle. They then promptly disappeared to complete an album - returning as a 7-piece with a superb work of art.
Synthesise kicks in with huge synths before a beat brings in the bass. The song flows superbly but it goes up a notch towards the end with the glorious 'every time you touch me' section with stunning harmonies before a laser brings everything back in.
Try to catch your breath.
Automatic is kind of Bowie meets Kraftwerk produced by Arthur Russell. A robot love song. The production throughout the album is crystal clear. The Kraftwerk style section sends warm tingles down my spine.
The album cover is apt, this is a band reaching for the stars. Miracle is the kind of song that Coldplay would kill for. The closing 1 minute and 20 seconds is like nothing else you will have heard all year - reaching for the stars and jetting past them to Mars.
Tiny Little Sparks is explosive, the beautiful guitar riff bringing a sense of calm before the menacing bass and beat kick in and the chorus makes you punch the air in delight. A soaring anthem with a Who style breakdown before the riff lifts you into the stratosphere.
Land of the Lost Cause is a magical, mystery poem, cinematic in terms of lyrics and feeling. The explosion back into life at 2 minutes and 45 seconds is spine tingling.
The burst of energy that is urges a love to Run to the Horizon on the chorus of the song is infectious. You feel like you are wanting the characters in this song (and the album) to make it, to get away, to escape.
Sparks to Fire is currently my favourite song on a very strong album, starting with a spoken word sample before developing into something quite remarkable, full of ambition. Unrushed, beautiful vocals with real feeling, it just gets better and better as it goes on and with each listen.
Run to the Horizon and Sparks To Fire are both over 5-minutes long and feel like they are the real centrepiece of the album.
The album is full of love, hope, fear, a sense of something better being out there but being along; Whispering Song contains many of these themes and is as assured and soulful as the rest of the album.
The album closes with Fire Went Out, a gorgeous acoustic soul ballad. The closing section is just magical and could bring a tear to a glass eye, taking on a gospel/americana flavour.
Quite an incredible album. No gigs have been announced to date so simply enjoy the album for the time being by visiting Flash Talk at Bandcamp.