When the narrative comes to be written for standout albums of 2009, there’s going to be a whole heap of Scottish bands involved. And they just keep coming: The Phantom Band, My Latest Novel, Meursault, We Were Promised Jetpacks, the live Frightened Rabbit Album, Broken Records… There Will Be Fireworks are the latest to well up from the fertile Scottish plains, and I suspect, come the end of 2009, they’re going to be somewhere near the top of that ragged heap, if not at the very top.
The facts are these: There Will Be Fireworks are four Glaswegians – old school friends – Adam Ketterer (drums, glockenspiel), David Madden (bass), Gilbran Farrah (guitar, violin, piano) and Nicholas McManus (guitars, vocals, organ) and this is their first record, though it has been a fair while in the making. It was recorded pretty much live in a huge 17th century mill in Stratharven and it’s hard to miss the fact that the circumstances of the recording have invaded the record’s very weave – it sounds huge. What the band have done is taken the dynamics of a certain strand of post-rock (think Mogwai and Explosions In The Sky) and squashed them into throbbing, explosively passionate songs, and in doing so have channelled something of a new sound – a propulsive, widescreen sound that seems at once born of the organic live recording situation and something else, something deeper. There are lives packed into these songs, and at times it feels as if the skin is close to ripping. (more…)