Blaenavon released their stunning debut album, That’s Your Lot, on the 7th April 2017, on Transgressive Records. It’s 59 minutes long and every second is a beauty.
Blaenavon’s debut album is one I’ve been looking forward to for months. The band seem to bring out such beautifully crafted songs, which are effortlessly easy to listen to. They’re a band you want to fall in and out of love with and their album is one that I wish I could listen to again for the first time in its entirety and savour every minute. It’s difficult to prise the best songs out because it works so well, so coherently together. The band also featured on my list of bands and artists to keep an eye on in 2017.
The album begins with the melodic ‘Take Care’. Its sentiment is significant and sets up the album perfectly as a bold, five minute long start. There’s no ‘filler’ intro song, which bands seem pretty into doing at the moment. Having said that, there’s no filler anywhere on the album. Everything feels intentional.
The album is laced with huge singles and previously released songs. In fact, what I loved most about the album was that I already knew and loved half of the songs on the record because they’d already released them prior to the record’s actual release (like a greatest hits of what they’ve done before- yet there’s no ‘Hell is in Your Head’, which makes me sad). ‘Let’s Pray’ followed by ‘Orthodox Man’ followed by ‘My Bark is Your Bite’ is a pretty strong line up. ‘Let’s Pray’ is melancholically beautiful, whereas ‘Orthodox Man’ is undoubtably one of the strongest songs on the album and could easily be a classic indie anthem given time and popularity increase (seriously, if you do only listen to one song from the album then let it be this one because it’ll win you over and make you totally smitten and undeniably infatuated with the band). It’s gloriously upbeat, infectiously catchy and, overall, just a stunningly written and composed piece of music.
‘Lonely Side’ is another strong contender for the greatest song on the album though. It’s feels really ‘cool’, if you will, and has this chilled out indie rock vibe.
It’s followed by the short, piano accompanied ‘Let Me See What Happens Next’. The song is sung and played by Ben Gregory (lead singer) and you can hear how great Gregory’s vocals really are. It breaks the album up and leads us into the second half, which features plenty of deep cut tracks and longer songs.
‘Alice Come Home’, ‘I Will Be The World’ and ‘Prague ’99’ all feature incredible instrumentals and really show just how polished the album really is. They’re all strong songs, but work perfectly well supported by one another. The band show off their incredible talent in a way which is effortless to listen to. ‘Swans’ is the longest song on the album and stands at a mighty 8 minutes long. It’s unapologetically deep cut and fits perfectly into the latter half of album.
‘That’s Your Lot’ is the final song on the record (I’d assume because that really is your lot). The lyrics are hauntingly poignant, which is something the band do very well. It’s triumphant and ends in a euphony of guitar and drum, before Gregory declares “that’s your lot” and is really is, sadly.
It feels like Blaenavon have really given their all to this album. There’s no ‘token’ song. Each song is beautifully crafted and deservingly necessary. You can’t really choose a highlight because every song is intentional and has a significance within the album and every song is brilliant in its own way. You’d be a fool not to check them out. They’re one of the greatest (relatively) undiscovered indie gems and I’m sure they’re onto something good.