Tuneful summer pop songs, wonderfully orchestrated to sound like a modern day ‘Beach Boys’ wrestling it out with ‘Clap Your Hands Say Yeah’ and ‘Belle and Sebastian’. ‘The loose Salute’ make great use of the traditional lo fi sound with boy girl counterpoint vocal harmonies. The two singers; Ian McCutcheon and Lisa Billson compliment each other remarkably well and are both equally capable of creating different atmospherics and moods so there’s plenty here to entertain and enough to mean that if this band are up your street you’ll never get bored of the album.
‘The Mutineer’ is undoubtedly the highlight; a dreamy whimsical folk number that will drift you away into the realms of the unknown, its soothing chimes are akin to Nick Drake circa ‘Pink Moon’, the songs comparisons to such a great as the aforementioned act is no exaggeration of the Loose Salute’s ability, the tender element of this track is quite stunning, possessing a rawness that will be difficult to emulate throughout the bands inevitable career. ‘I can change this room with this chords, this tune and my mouth’ rasps the singer, and I’m in no doubt that wherever this truly beautiful song is heard it will change whatever is going on in the room that it’s heard in because simply put it’s impossible not to be drawn in and enthralled by the majestic qualities of this song.
No one song on this album fails to disappoint and each of them reveal different qualities and influences. Opener ‘Death Club’ is littered with more chimey harmonies and sets the album off with an upbeat, creative and explosive start.
The band pull of the arty and geeky but cool sound to a tee, be sure to see them as one of the first bands on the ‘all tomorrows parties’ festival circuit next year. Along with ‘Los Campesinos’ this band could make a strong claim for band most likely to unleash lo -fi onto the mainstream.
‘Photographs and Tickets’ is one of the many other highlights on the album; a tragic and forlorn tale of love coming to an end, and being left with nothing but memories and ‘photos and ticket stubs from old shows’. It’s a tender and heartfelt three minutes that lends itself more than nicely to the female vocalist of the band.
‘Turn the Radio Up’ sees the band divulge into country territory but all the while still maintaining their poppy roots, it ticks all the boxes and manages to sound like ‘Dolly Parton’ covering ‘The Magic Numbers’, which weird as it sounds is nothing short of spectacular.
Elsewhere the album is full to the brim with many gems, there’s the banjo driven ballad ‘Why’d We Fight?’ another sad tale and ballad that will whisk you away with its delicate to the point of breaking composition. Then there’s the title track ‘Tuned To Love’ a lively bluesy bustle of guitar riffs to impress within an eclectic arrangement that revels the bands more experimental tendencies.
Overall I cannot reiterate enough the sheer quality and rawness of this band, they have exceeded my expectations and revealed a prowess for not only heartbreaking country style melodies but also potential indie dance floor fillers and pop gems and placed them together into a truly special album that displays not only enormous potential for the future but a benchmark for all lo-fi bands to adhere towards. Production is crisp and clean and used to extreme minimalist effect meaning you can literally close your eyes and it’s as if the band are unplugged in your living room.