O Emperor - VitreousWednesday 19 Jun 2013
Label: Big Skin Records
Duration: 29 minutes
Three years can be the undoing of many a young band, especially when there's a parting of ways with a record label and a debut that didn't receive the wider audience it deserved. But if Waterford's O Emperor wandered around in the fog of doubt for a bit you can't tell from listening to Vitreous.
Strikingly different to the hearts-on-sleeve, rootsy rock of its predecessor, this self-released melon twister was created in the band's own bolthole, Big Skin HQ, where, in the words of Christopher Walken from the classic Saturday Night Live Blue Oyster Cult spoof, they really explored the studio space. Less cowbell, but loads of other great stuff.
Here 16x9 trippiness, gooey harmonies, skewed pop and man overboard balladry combine, all in an epic running time of, 29 minutes. Heck, they even give a nod to Kashmir on opening track Grandmother Mountain and get away with it. Hours later, your mantra remains the same: 'Did I really just hear that?'
Try and catch a few sunrises with this album before the end of summer; morning will indeed become eclectic.
Tracklisting: Grandmother Mountain - Holy Fool - Whitener (Part 1) - Brainchild - Contact - Minuet - Land of the Living - Soft in the Head - This Is It