Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The London Apartments - Signals & Cities Are Forever

The London Apartments
Signals & Cities Are Forever
(01.2009, self-released)
RIYL = My Bloody Valentine, Sigur Ros, A Place To Bury Strangers

The London Apartments carry some pretty ominous touchstones. As a music reviewer (even an unpaid, independent one) I am contractually obligated to deliver you, the music review reader, with the musical lineage from which this sound has been procured. And, unfortunately, this is going to read as a blanket statement for all meandering shoegazy post-rock played with fuzzy guitars: The London Apartments are descendents of My Bloody Valentine. It’s dumb, but it is true and to add additional weight to the glass ceiling these guys are playing under, there is a measured dose of Sigur Ros in there as well. After listening to Signals & Cities Are Forever, you could have spouted those musical references just as well as I. It is unfortunate, because the necessity of the name-check will virtually obliterate any chances of The London Apartments getting a fresh listen from readers who aren’t particularly fond of those bands or who have heard their plentiful share of knock-offs and derivatives. The unfortunate part of it isn’t that The London Apartments are particularly unique under the umbrella of the mighty MBV, but that as disciples of the guitars-via-static-laden-televisions crowd, The London Apartments are actually quite good at what they do. That may not make them the most relevant of musical innovators, but I assure you that among the hordes of MBV and Sigur Ros aping bands that litter your little iPods, The London Apartments are better. In fact, if all the hype and anticipation for the follow up to Loveless turned into Signals & Cities Are Forever, I wouldn’t be disappointed. The London Apartments aren’t looking to hide their influences, they have them hanging proudly on their sleeves, but the beauty is that they know how to take those influences and learn from them; how to push off and make something new without tainting the glory of their predecessors. For that The London Apartments must be respected, and for that respect the band has actually provided you with an exceptional gift – Signals & Cities Are Forever is available for free on the bands website. Sounds like a gimmick, and usually free albums tend to reveal the reason they cost nothing, but with The London Apartments, this is certainly not the case. Check the link below.

- Lil' Thistle

Donwload Signals & Cities Are Forever

1 comment:

Theoellington said...

A nice easy to read review. 'Signals & Cities Are Forever' is beautiful! As far as i can see you refered to The London Apartments as a band when it is one person. Even though it sounds like a band i think he does it all by himself which is even more admirable, especially as you said; when he gives it away for free!