Four friends with a passion for The Libertines and The Strokes and a bunch of youthful memories – this could briefly describe Liverpool-based indie-rock band Circa Waves. Unfortunately I don’t foresee the future, but I can easily predict that the world of indie-lovers will split in two when it comes to their debut album, Young Chasers: half of them will love it, half will probably dismiss it. As a matter of fact, this 13-track LP is not groundbreaking nor pushes the boundaries of innovation. It masterfully follows the lead of bands like the View and The Kooks. Frontman and singer Kieran Shudall has the kind of high-pitched voice you’d hear when Kyle Falconer or Luke Pritchard grab the mic. Songs like Best Years could have dropped off of Hats Off To The Buskers or Inside In/Inside Out. And by saying that I don’t mean these guys copied, but that their enthusiasm and energy use the same musical language.
Circa Waves are a bit older of their colleagues at the time of those albums and seem to have been fighting a bit more to get noticed, but they finally made it. In 2014 they performed at some of the best rock festivals in Europe, such as T-in the Park, Glastonbury and Reading in the UK and opened for The Libertines. Tracks like T-Shirt Weather and single Get Away, with their enthralling rhythm and raw vitality, would have the crowd singing back the words at every concert.
They are the first two in the tracklist and really set the tone for the record. Ballad Deserve This creates an isolated romantic moment, while the title track brings the listener back to boundless youth energy. All the songs are about the teens to early 20s, have a sense of recklessness and deal with not knowing what to do and with the frustration of wanting to be a professional musician without making it. “I’m a little too young/ With not enough time” sings the narrator in Stuck In My Teeth, making the sentence sound like an anathema.
This record re-energizes today’s indie music and, although the songs in this LP are all quite similar, I suspect Circa Waves are only going to get better. Can’t wait for the next album, in which hopefully they won’t look back but (fast) forward.
This review was published on Renowned for Sound.