Grim Town

SOAK - Grim Town
Critic Score
Based on 15 reviews
2019 Ratings: #334 / 590
User Score
Based on 67 ratings
2019 Ratings: #512
April 26, 2019 / Release Date
LP / Format
Rough Trade / Label
Indie Pop / Genres
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The Line of Best Fit
Skewing glossy sugar-laced melodies with low-key unvarnished folk, the Derry-based singer songwriter exhibits increasing versatility on this accomplished sophomore release.
Under The Radar

Granted, Grim Town does stretch on for a few minutes too long. But Monds-Watson still proves that the scenic route to adulthood is no less engaging—and certainly, that extra mile makes the humble closer "Nothing Looks the Same" all the more cathartic.

The Independent

In a way, Grim Town portrays the journey from adolescence into young adulthood – with all the introspection, resignation and wide-eyed forays into love that entails.


The Mercury-nominated Bridie Monds-Watson ensures that the journey for her second album is anything but grim with a procession of lush, gorgeously-crafted pop songs.


With its mix of catchy and moving songs, an artful structure, and a way with words, Grim Town delivers a piece of Zeitgeist as well as a solid set of tunes.

The Guardian
Yet there’s no doubt this is an album that benefits from employing a tried-and-tested formula – not least because it carries with it the precious and generally life-affirming ability to excavate pleasure from pain.

Grim Town makes growing up seem—well, grim—but Monds-Watson skillfully captures its bitter realities as well as the stirring memories that become life fuel.


SOAK’s honesty, combined with her considerable musical gifts, ensures that Grim Town is always a nice place to visit, even if you’d never want to live there.

The melodies are intoxicating and their ability to wind and intertwine is captivating, but it’s Monds-Watson’s vocals that are the real star. They range from childlike whispers, to delicate crooning and a raging storm of a vocal. This is an album to explore and get lost in.

Grim Town is a concept in itself: it is a fictitious location, an embodiment of feeling that has been brought to life by the sentiment and memory that revolve around it. Through it, SOAK is able to explore emotion and turn it into something tangible.

This second album merely serves to confirm that talent and build upon the foundation of the first outing, showing signs both of maturation and the accompanying growing pains that come with it.
The album mixes together glossy, upbeat production with tales of disappointment, confusion and intergenerational angst.
Northern Transmissions

Grim Town, SOAK’s followup to her debut, dips little toes into sounds, genres, and topics well tread by young artists. There are definite moments of strength and potential, especially in her maturing production, though a few strong trees don’t make a forest.


Despite being disheartened by this anti-climatic album, it’s still nice to listen to. SOAK’s voice is effortlessly sweet yet tinged with desperation, playing beautifully atop ebullient melodies and memorable choruses.

Oh look, an alt-pop album that I actually like! Grim Town is unique and full of SOAK’s distinct personality but is not ashamed to show off its influences, such as The 1975 and The Cure (but, like, Wish-era Cure). Emotionally charged yet light-hearted, nearly every song on this album is the dictionary definition of a bop. While the slower, ballad-style songs aren’t my personal cup of tea, SOAK’s vocals are perfectly imperfect, resonating with the listener so that you ... read more
Worth a listen
If you want a friendly pop album with great indie vibes and solid songwriting, this is the perfect album for you.

Soak has a very sweet voice and mixxes a large spectrum of pop album (one example in my mind is the last japanese breakfast album. I don't know why this album specificaly because it's more dreamy)

This is type of album I simply enjoy the listening over analyzing in depths each aspects of the music itself. Sometimes, isn't it the best thing to do ?
Incredibly solid LP, throughout the whole thing you can feel emotion through Soak's vocals, each song (in the first half at least) feels like a single (in the best sense possible). The album does dip near the end which is a shame, but overall is a very solid release

Favourite Tracks: Get Set Go Kid, Everybody Loves You, Knock Me Off My Feet, Maybe, Fall Asleep/Backseat, Crying Your Eyes Out, Scrapyard, YBFTBYT, Missed Calls
Least Favourite Tracks: I Was Blue, Technicolour Too, Life Trainee
SOAK's second LP is a solid indie pop record which does nothing new nor groundbreaking but is very good at making catchy tunes whilst having a few heartfelt members moments. It is beautiful in that aspect of it shows the growth of SOAK via its lyrical content. The vocal perfomance by SOAK are excellent and captivate the feeling of bleakness whilst growing up. However, cause it does nothing to excite me or make me truly go wow i can't really rate it any higher. I did enjoy this record but it ... read more
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Track List

  1. "All Aboard"
  2. Get Set Go Kid
  3. Everybody Loves You
  4. Knock Me off My Feet
  5. Maybe
  6. Fall Asleep / Backseat
  7. Crying Your Eyes Out
  8. I Was Blue, Technicolour Too
  9. Déjà Vu
  10. Scrapyard
  11. Valentine Shmalentine
  12. Ybftbyt
  13. Life Trainee
  14. Missed Calls
  15. Nothing Looks the Same
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Added on: January 10, 2019