The Envy corps haven’t had it easy in recent times. First off, their guitarist Brandon Darner suffered a freak stroke whilst playing on stage. Luckily, as their myspace pics show, (sat in his hospital bed playing guitar the next day) his young age meant he made a speedy recovery and the band is now touring again. However the album was accidentally leaked onto the Internet three months prior to its release date meaning a painful blow to the piggy bank. Then founder member and brother to Scott, David Yoshimura left to teach in Japan. After these unsettling circumstances, the much-anticipated second album from the Iowan trio is here in its full shiny plastic cd form.
Opener ‘Wires and Wool’ is not a great lead for a comeback record but rest assured there’s better to come than trying to fit 4 syllables into the word ‘song.’ The sometimes soothing, sometimes howling vocals of Luke Pettipoole make a grand entrance on the of the explosive triumph of ‘Walls.’ Gently teasing the curiosity out of us until an instrumental build up comes and then disperses just as quick. Leaving us with an eerie thought to ponder: ‘Haven’t you heard? I survived the blast.’
Definite echoes of British Indie bands lie sombrely amidst this American quartet and it’s not such a great influence for a whole album when you don’t really stand a shot next to the big boys. Ten years previously, and the remnants of ‘OK Computer’ are still a keen invasion on the front man’s musical direction. However, the more upbeat ‘’Story Problem’ offers some relief by way of giving us the mighty handclap induced group vocals.
Some of you will love this album so much you’ll probably keep it under your pillow, England has after all gained these twenty something’s a very loyal fan base.
For the harder to please audience though, Dwell is definitely an album to keep on stand by; you won’t be dancing to it in your giant M&S ‘hide all the naughty bits’ knickers before a night out, but you may well wind down to it on your drunken return whilst you give up trying to get them off.
Quite heavy in parts and frustratingly quiet in others, the quite unfortunate pit fall of this second album is the very real lack of singles. Nothing sticks in your mind as all the tracks easily drift into each other, which may be an effortless goal If the band wanted to define their style, but they sound so much like a bit of everyone else they are unrecognisable in a sea of guitar ridden Indie rock.
They’ve somehow managed to sound like a Liverpudlian student band attempting to copy Coldplay, Starsailor and Kings of Leon. With so many contenders so far this year, The Envy Corps haven’t succeeded where many others have; giving their listeners no option but to become an addict.