Friday 21 September 2012

Cats Park - Face The Future EP

EP review by KevW

They say you should never judge a book by its cover, yet looking at the cold, grey, industrial and generally uninspiring artwork for this new EP from Cats Park it's difficult to be inspired. The effect of the music is similar. At first glance it's monochrome, one-paced, paired-down trip-hop. 'Face The Future' isn't one to crack open the Jagermeister to then. Initial impressions show a perfect match of audio and visual and it's pretty clear that this Saint Petersburg group aren't here to get the party started, and that stark cover and title convey a much more ominous tone. This tone is echoed by the songs, so if you're after an instant pop rush then there's little chance you'll find it in this post-apocalyptic wasteland. One of the more interesting aspects about music as an art-form is that impressions can alter and atmospheres can change once the music has had time to penetrate your brain and familiarise itself with you.

Given time, 'Face The Future' might not exactly start giving Black Lace a run for their money, but it does begin to impress more as you digest it. 'Your Love Is A Sin' is really the blueprint for the EP: steady, well produced, mid-paced and admirable, if not exactly electrifying. The vocals are great, and on this track and 'Brand New Day' they add a lightness which doesn't necessarily come across upon first listen and the latter is also the most optimistic song here. Different music suits different settings and different atmospheres. Cats Park aren't a band to listen to after waking up, bursting out of bed and opening the curtains to reveal glorious sunshine. This EP is best consumed at night, and you get the impression it wasn't recorded in your regular nine-to-five working day. 'Face The Future' is stark and forbidding, conveying a message that isn't particularly teaming with hope. That cover still looks drab and desolate however much you look at it, the music on the other hand, given time and despite lacking diversity is quietly impressive. So ignore the cover but stick with the book and you might end up pleasantly surprised.

Cats Park's website

Stream and name-your-price download of the EP

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