Say Yes, the third album by Big Deal, follows their debut Lights Out from 2011 and the critically acclaimed June Gloom from 2013.
The American (Kacey Underwood) and English (Alice Costelloe) duo are joined on this record by Dom Boyce from Peace, who guest spots on drums, and full-time members Jessica Batour (drums) and Jesse Wong (bass).
Here, Big Deal join the likes of Minor Victories and Dilly Dally in the 90s grunge revival and for anyone old enough to remember grunge the first time around, it's a slightly curious concept to see dragged back.
Say Yes marks a departure from June Gloom, an album with ‘big’ singles (“Swapping Spit” and “In Your Car”) and a generally bouncing, energetic, pop infused affair. This time 'round, it's a more serious and sullen experience.
Their third offering opens strongly, as "Avalanche" features great duo vocals from Alice and Kacey, epic guitars, noisy drums making it a clear highlight. Title track (and lead single) is another standout with a gorgeous light quality about it; the guitars swoon and swirl around lyrics detailing how “I won't tell, wont tell you, everything works out fine” . "Saccharine" is as sugary as its title suggests, and is Big Deal at their most pop - think Hole’s finest offering "Malibu" reimagined.
After that however, the album sadly loses its momentum. Pace picks up a little with electro jumpy pop number "V.I.T.R.O.L", but it fails to be as exciting as those fine first few songs. Towards the end on tracks like "Still In My Dream", the meandering becomes repetitive, and the tail end of songs feel bloated and over indulgent.
Say Yes limps to the finish with "Idyllwild", and while the track itself is unremarkable, if you do stick with it to the very end, you''ll be richly rewarded with a glorious string outro. Like its album cover art, Big Deal's third album is pleasantly dreamlike and fuzzy, but lacking focus.