Album Review: City Yelps, Half Hour

City Yelps, Half Hour (Odd Box Records, 4/22/2016)

After a few blistering singles and 2014’s Cheap Psych cassette, Leeds, UK-based City Yelps are back to delight us all with a brand new long-player, Half Hour.

City Yelps channel a whole host of bands in crafting their own take on skewed indie pop:  the woozy, lo fi psych-pop charm of Flying Nun and C86 bands; the wiry, spiky tones of Swell Maps, The Fall, even Half Man, Half Biscuit.  Singer/guitarist Shaun Alcock delivers wry lyrics with a withering sneer – amidst a maelstrom of detuned guitars, layers of reverb and snare shots that sound like a slap – sounding like the acerbic uncle who you not so secretly love to hang out with at the holidays.

What counts most, though, are the songs – and these are effing fantastic.  Tracks like “We Like the Hours”, and the raucous one-two punch of “Light and Classical” and “Making Noise”, twist, swing and sway like a punch drunk fighter who might be going down, but is taking folks with him.  Unwind the gauzy bandages of tape hiss and distortion and what you discover are strong, tightly arranged melodies, played with the righteous indignation of a group with courage in their convictions.  After spending a Half Hour with them (see what we did there?  Get on with it?  Ah, yes, ok…), you’ll be convinced, too; hell, you may even tell two friends, and so on.

Half Hour is out now, courtesy of Odd Box Records.  Order it now on the label’s bandcamp page, and check out the band’s newsletter page on fbook.  While you’re at it, hop on over to the band’s own bandcamp page and pick up a copy of Cheap Psych.  You know you want to.

Highlights include:  “We Like the Hours”, “Now”, “Light and Classical”, “Music for Adverts”.

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