ALBUM REVIEW: Catfish and the Bottlemen – The Balance | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Island Records

Released: 26.04.19






Catfish And The Bottlemen might have taken a little while to get going, with almost a decade between their formation and the critical success they found in 2016, but they’ve done well to make up for lost time. The Balance comes as their third full length album in five years: that’s half the length of time they spent as a band before they reached the dizzying heights of fame.

So is this follow-up to 2016’s The Ride worth the wait? For hardcore Catfish fans, definitely. Production value alone makes this album a small thrill to listen to, since every song sounds as smooth as butter. On top of that, you’ve got fine examples of the indie rock genre: album opener Longshot’s classic bassline hooks the listener fairly easily, while 2all shows Catfish’s melodic indie side. I’m personally here for Fluctuate’s drumline – the beat of which fittingly fluctuates to bump the tune up from basic to really rather exciting. Meanwhile, the indie four-piece have planned ahead for their summer festival setlists with Sidetrack, a song which will be right at home on a stage in the middle of a field in August. Catfish And The Bottlemen might not be breaking new ground with this record, but when you have a comfy spot in the indie scene to occupy, why rock the boat? The Balance is unoffensive, well-formed and, to be quite honest, just very easy to enjoy – it certainly, and crucially, is not boring.   

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