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Mammoth Penguins / The Luxembourg Signal / Firestations The Lexington, London
Article written by
Matt H - Jul 23, 2015
Ahhhh, this Fortuna Pop-hosted warm–up bodes well for Indietracks. First up Firestations come on full of preppy charm and enthusiasm (imagine if Jack Whitehall weren’t annoying – difficult I know, but that) and a handful of very decent indieish tunes overlaid with excellent guitar, synth and horn textures. The more of the textures the better to be honest – one or two of the songs built up a real wave of sound and are definitely the most successful.
Which is also true of the Luxembourg Signal. Their stock-in-trade is a rather dreamier psychedelicky loveliness, but there’s also plenty of pop goodness in their twin-vocalled concoctions (and I’ll never not enjoy a band who can go at a mutli-voiced ‘ba ba ba’ chorus with a real intent). You can see why they’ve got a good core of proper devotees whirling down the front.
I hadn’t yet caught up with Mammoth Penguins. It’s no surprise that they’re good of course – we’re big Emma Kupa fans here at Soundsxp. But it is bit of surprise that their powerpop tunes have so much oomph (despite a knackered distortion pedal). I hesitate to say it but, erm, they rock. And they have, if not exactly a swagger, then a comfort in playing live that, for instance, Standard Fare didn’t always have. Kupa’s voice has always been a thing of wonder, but her songwriting is a real cut above too. And on this evidence it’s going from strength to strength. Different in style of course, but she shares the knack of someone like James Yorkston in capturing the universality of the lower-key things - the reflection after the bust up, the moment when real quiet happiness dawns, the silence after the cutting remark - that sort of thing… It’s a real and growing talent, and one that deserve an audience beyond the indiepop coterie.
In the meantime though, yes, it bodes very well for Indietracks. Except I’m not going. Still, I’m sure you are…