Some time ago, March to be exact, I happened upon a band at Joseph's Well. That band was the Anti-depressants, and after being treated to the promise and potential of an all too short set, I have tried to keep an eye out for them.
Some of you might be forgiven for not knowing their name already, they have a tendency to fly under the radar, preferring to keep busy honing and refining their sounds. It's been a while since I saw them, but the promise they showed that night in March, and the belief they conveyed had me eager to hear how things have been progressing.
It might be worth noting, this review is hideously late. That's my fault. I'm not much of a writer, just a music lover. Consequently, there haven't been many times when I thought I should pen a few words, but there have been plenty of times when I have reached for the Anti-depressants' debut album. I put it in the car. I took it to work. I even took it on holiday...
From the very start, that belief is there again, and the previously mentioned promise is captured by pounding drums and a guitar riff that could almost be anthemic by itself. "You only get what you see" is a blisteringly perfect slice of guitar pop, sounding every bit like the A side of a single most bands would be envious of. It's not the only would be 'single' on there either. The second track "Two sides of something beautiful" is another guitar pop gem, with a great chorus of harmonies likely to give the Beach Boys a few sleepless nights.
Most bands in Leeds struggle to find a good singer. Somehow the Anti-depressants have found two, and use them to great effect. It's the first thing that really stands out about this album. The other thing that stands out is their lack of complacency, and this means they're not quite your average guitar pop band. There are some great ideas in there, nice touches, like the Brazilian samba style drum breakdown of "Follow me", or the great vocal performances of "For you" (another potential single methinks).
In my live review I kind of took the proverbial out of the singer for wearing a fishing hat. After hearing this album, put a packet of frozen peas on you head mate, it doesn't matter what is on your head if the singing is this good. I take it all back, you have made me eat my words, and if you catch me before breakfast, I'll eat the hat too.
Ok. So here's the bit that teenagers can get angry and abusive to me over (again). This album is good, really good, but it's not flawless. There's still a feint whiff of a 'filler' in a couple of the tracks. Thinking about it though, isn't that true for most albums?
The other slight niggle is the lyrical content. It's good to use a theme people can relate to, and the recurring subject here seems to be about being young, falling in love for the first time, breaking up etc. etc. Maybe it's just me, it's a good enough subject, but a little variety might not go amiss.
Knowing how difficult to please I am (just ask the wife!), if these issues are the only bad things I have to say, it only goes some way towards reinforcing that belief, and proves that they have been working hard to realise their potential.
I do have one other thing to say though. I don't think this album is the best thing the Anti-depressants will have to offer. I firmly believe that is still yet to come. That name again - the Anti-depressants. Remember it. You might hear it a little more often over the coming months if their album is anything to by, and deservedly so.