This. This, right here. This shows that rock is very much alive and well, and that we don't need to be so fixated on past trends in order to make genuinely compelling, unique, genre-pushing music.
I'm gonna be honest, the 2020s have been absolutely abysmal for music. It seems that every significant artist has run dry of interesting ideas and are now copying each other, and in the case of rock, past acts in order to maintain a consistent image instead of looking for legitimate inspiration and utilizing that creativity to make something incredible. I think that GVF album a couple weeks back perfectly explains what I mean. As much as I despise that band, they do have talent. But they aren't utilizing that talent, and are instead copying whatever bands from half a century ago did well, missing the mark of what made said artists good so badly that they hit themselves in the face, and somehow getting applause for doing so by those that are either ignorant to said artists or are simply blind to the fact that rock has always been an ever-evolving genre that never even stuck to a singular style in a single decade and are just loving the nostalgia. And now we have Squid. Whereas certain other rock acts have two or three obvious influences that they wear on their sleeve, Squid have at least 5-10, maybe even upwards of 15 influences, all of which come together and culminate in a wholly distinct and unique sound that you aren't going to hear anywhere else. Honestly, this whole movement of British post-punk bands + black midi coming out of the woodworks has been the best thing to happen to the genre since King Gizz proved that rock could still be fun in the 2010s. And Squid are probably the most exciting one of the bunch (excluding black midi, of course, since I can see them making albums in the future that push the boundaries even further than any of these bands). The fact that in this 55 minute run time - which is generally a red-flag to me with current releases, with so many artists seemingly pushing as much content into an album as possible regardless of whether it needs to actually be there or not - every second is engaging, highly entertaining, and unbelievably memorable just shows how much potential there is to be found in this one band. Hell, scratch that, this entire movement. At the moment, these three artists (you know which ones I'm talking about) are the most exciting acts in all of the 2020s. Each of them have just released amazing debuts, one of them about to release a sophomore which is undoubtedly one of my most anticipated releases of the year, and I can see nothing but great things from each of them in the future.
Sorry for the ranty and probably incoherent review. I just wanted to get my thoughts down. This album just made me so excited for the future of one of my all-time favourite genres, and I just needed to praise it for a bit.
Favourite Tracks: Narrator; Paddling; G.S.K.; Peel St.; Pamphlets; Boy Racers; 2010
Least Favourite Track: N/A