I first heard of these guys when they got in touch about my review of Boy Jumps Ship. The two bands know each other, both hailing from the North East, and Fosseway’s name stuck in my head as I recognised it as a reference to a suburb of Newcastle (although deliberately mis-spelled). The guys themselves are actually Gateshead-based so I’m going to be somewhat biased in my opinion of them as I was born and raised there!
Ultrasound is their debut EP and is available to listen to for free on SoundCloud. Or scroll down the page where I’ve embedded it. Or accost one of the band and buy a CD copy from them. It was released on the 3rd of May with a launch party at the O2 Academy in Newcastle and it’s a nice, chilled out yet rocky brand of indy.
Soundwise it has a nice lo-fi tone to it, from the deliberate crackle of an amp being set up at the beginning of “Dance in the Dark” to the subdued tones of the vocals. That’s not to say it’s badly or cheaply produced – anything but. It sounds great, a deliberate step away from the speaker pulverising metal I’m used to. In fact, if I was to name a band they reminded me most of at first listen then it’s actually The Police. Partly it’s due to the vocals – the accent and style are very much “Sting when he was twenty” and the relaxed beat of “You Don’t Have To Go Home Tonight” (with guest female vocals) exemplifies this more than any other song on the EP. Partly, and again I’m referring to the same track, it’s the simplistic guitar. You don’t need to play hugely complex riffs to impress. This is minimalism at its best, with the guitar and vocals complementing each other perfectly and the drum beat just coasting in the background.
Another track with this Gordon Sumner-esque vibe is “All I’ve Ever Longed For” though mainly through the intro with the bass clearly carrying the tune into the opening verse. The chorus is one of the brightest on the album and incredibly catchy. This is a summer song in every respect and deserves to be played in the car with the windows rolled down for the entire sunny season. Which, given that I now live in Glasgow, was today.
Less bouncy, but every bit as good, is the slower and more thoughtful “Never Again” which tells of separation and losing someone you were close to. The refrain at the end as the song fades to black is simply lovely. This is a song that I actually stopped, sat and listened to – that is a very, very rare thing to happen.
Across the six tracks, there is something for everyone who likes this style of music. The songs are incredibly well written and very well performed. Ultrasound is a beautiful, sparkling Geordie gem and I urge you to just scroll down a little bit and hit “play”.
Header image by Paul Murray Media.