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The Buddyrevelles - The Consolations (self-released)

28 May 2024

The bass guitar is an oft-overlooked instrument. That might be because many who take it up are just looking for a quick way to get into a band – guitarists are two-a-penny, drums are cumbersome, and singing is an exposed and isolated experience, but swinging a four-string can often get you a job whether you are any good or not. This may result in many people regarding the bassist as a bit of a coaster, getting by on the bare minimum yet always in demand. If you find yourself agreeing with me at this point, then you need to give The Consolation a spin, the new ep from Eau Claire indie kids, The Buddyrevelles.

Here, the bass plays a broad role; it is melodic, rhythmic, subdued, deft, robust, and delicate as required. Obviously, one instrument does not make a band, but The Buddyrevelles is an excellent example of why I consider the three-piece rock band to be the ultimate set-up. Everyone needs to be on their game…even the bassist. Especially the bassist.

Across four songs, they proceed to push their instruments to their creative best, never overplaying, always finding the most creative way through, always serving the song. “Abracadabracus” is a dreamscape and drifting slice of progressive indie-rock; “Music Crisis Mid Life” is a spacious and chiming piece of poised pop with just enough 60’s references to keep things the right side of nostalgia, not to mention some lovely brass highlights and “Born To Lose” dances with new wave energy.

We end with “Locked In, Loaded”, which is a slightly pathos-enriched piece of the eighties-infused pop, not the chart sort but the sort of thing that came out of small UK indies such as Sarah or Postcard Records, delicate but not twee, deft but never too ornate. The sound that should have been big, but could never compete with the industry giants.

The more I play this record, the more I love it. I have played it a lot.