Album Review::Argonaut

When we reviewed the first single from Argonaut's self titled recent album we said it was akin to hearing Garbage's 'Vow' for the very first time. And it's a similar feel listening to the full album. Some may say that the Grunge scene is a remnant of the recent past that doesn't need to be revisited but we say bring it on!

The comparisons with early Hole are perhaps inevitable here but it's one that is very valid. Just as their work retains it's mystique and charm to this day Argonaut has a timeless feel to it with a raw cool to boot. Opener Monet has an off kilter charm that beautifies the song immensely. It's subtly string imbued chorus is as good an example of such beauty as can be found. But the chords amp up for the grungier Touch Electric, and it's a perfect point to introduce the raw edge of the bands sound. Indeed, it's an edge that never overbears rather remains on a leash that keeps it from becoming mere noise.

There are many more highlights on the album, with Two Lights impressing as it racks up the tension in droplets of bass and guitar, the darkly sweet vocal working particularly well on this track. Subtler moments also abound, some key moments being The Detail and the albums closer Sleep Tight. On the latter the melodic elements come into greater focus and the vocal become almost ethereal, with the grunge element just a dark atmospheric effect.

With a concise ten tracks and dark sonic unity this is an album that impresses in even the most subtle of it's elements.

Reviewed by Sebastian Gahan. 

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