Another Track of the day, another incredibly talented band from New York. I have no idea what they put in the water over there but I’d be more than up for drowning One Direction in it. The thought of Harry Styles face down in a huge tub is enough to cheer anyone up, despite the bollock numbing cold outside. Anyway, on with the review.
Empire starts off with a low, intriguing drumbeat and quickly erupts into an unrelenting avalanche of sound. The falsetto vocals of Matthew Iwanusa bare a striking resemblance to those of Fleet Foxes’ Robin Pecknold and add a layer of emotional intensity in between the pulsing keyboard.
Every dramatic note enhances the grand sense of occasion and conjures images of tribes preparing to do battle in snowy forests hundreds of years ago, clashing their weapons against animal skin shields and screaming into the sky. Or maybe that’s just me.
As mentioned, there’s hints of Fleet Foxes but also Bjork, Band of horses and even Woodkid buried in this incredibly ambitious and previously unheard track, which was written as the band recorded their self-titled second album. Empire sees Caveman leave behind the mellow sound of their first album, CoCo Beware, and march bravely into new territory. If this song is anything to go by, it’s a territory they’ll conquer soon enough.
The five-piece have been on a mammoth tour of the US and will play a few shows in France next June. If you booked tickets now, you could probably get a Eurostar for a hundred quid.