Info: Having released two EPs in 2015 to critical acclaim, Cat Palace will release their much anticipated debut album on April 1st , preceded by a music video for album track "Peddle It". Informed and inspired by gutteral feelings of devotion and loss, the album's intent is to build upon and expand the textures presented in the first two releases, simultaneously delving further lyrically into the trappings of mundanity and interpersonal relationships - never failing to see the humour in either.
The album was written during time spent between Dublin and Louisville, Kentucky, and recorded at Ailfionn Recording Studio in Drumcondra. Cat Palace finds Blaney working with longstanding collaborator and bandmate, producer Christopher Barry and drummer Oisín Trench (Enemies, The River Fane).
Opening with a delicious chugging acoustic rhythm effect, Cat Palace's Why Don't You // Why Don't You, Go Off is an album that is bursting with treats starting with a track which shares the nom du plume of the act. The song is like a real introduction, almost apologetic in mood, but it has such a sweet hazy rhythm that you already become aware that you're going to enjoy what is to follow.
'Welcome To Your Life' has a flamenco meets bossa nova sound, Blaney working his way around the tables, microphone in hand, at some sunny resort, it's easy listening and a style which is very suited to his vocal. Bread and butter is on the table with the minimal indie-electro vibe of 'Don't Come Around', a classic Cat Palace track, skulking and targeted, it meanders around restrained stabbing chord progressions, again an admirable vocal dexterity is on display.
After the punk leaning of 'I Thought' we are presented with 'Broken Face', a neo-psychedelic crossover between Super Furry Animals and The Drones, it oozes cool and some slick interplay between bass and guitar, a zinger of a track and easily one of my favourites on the album. A track titled 'Hey, The Jazz' is telling, and lo and behold, bass and percussion adopt the late 60's and early 70's experimental jazz, think Alice Coltrane. When the vocals join the fray we find ourselves steered toward more psychedelic avenues, Velvet Underground or Jefferson Airplane at their more stripped down, with Blaney in top form once again on vox switching between soft and grunge with ease.
Cat Palace - Peddle It
Recent single 'Peddle It' is up next, which we previously described as follows; 'The low hum of Blaney's vocal operates underneath rolling picking and light percussion. At its early stages it has an unplugged Nirvana / Pearl Jam vibe both vocally and musically, and I can't believe I'm over two and a half minutes into the track before it escalates, where did that time go? From here on in the track becomes decidedly escapist, reminiscent of one of Spiritualized's more lo-fi numbers.'
The moody 'Ding Song' paves the way for the calm and spiritual experience that is 'Ghost', distantly plonking piano chords, a laboured and mechanical bass-line and an almost baritone vocal are all hypnotic when combined. It could be argued that this is the crowning moment of the album for Cat Palace, everything that has come before has led to this moment, has been poured in with care and passion. Closing with a rumpus of a song in 'The Bastard In Me', reggae and ska influences peeper the track, and doesn't that sum up Why Don't You // Why Don't You, Go Off essentially? A wild concoction of styles and genres all masterfully pulled together towards one focal point by Blaney, a key Irish album for 2017 which is a must listen.
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