We’ve been waiting for The Kite String Tangle debut album since Vessel was out, back in 2014. These almost three years with very few news about Danny Harley’s project have not been kind to us. When a few months ago the first step was given into our reconciliation, we didn’t expect a self-titled album to came out shortly after. But it did. And we now have completely surrendered. In a proper rendition to it, here is a song-by-song review of one of this year’s best albums.
Just like an irony to this long awaited album, the first track is the brutal Waiting. A track with the capacity of perfectly introducing the Australian project to new listeners and fulfilling every hidden or forgotten expectation of past fans. Electric and electronic. With a perfect mix between the simplicity of the scarce chorus vocals, and the almost falsetto that keeps making the song going further. Probably The perfect album opener.
Beneath the Canopy is the second track, and a ballad meets electronic song about keeping things simple and honest to our feelings. A track that is also the perfect demonstration of how an artist can keep true to romantic feelings while still working around synths and popish compositions. Very danceable. Truly tasteful.
The Prize is the first collaboration of the album (and the first since the marvellous Illuminate). Flume-like drops, a perfect duet (Bridgette Amofah subtle contribution is unmissable), and an ever changing cadence. All these ingredients make this a probable comercial hit, and one which eventually won’t be ruined by too much repetition. Much in owe of it’s characteristics and the fact that it truly flies by.
Following, Know By Know turns the cadence back down with another indietronic ballad. A romantic song about the less-good things in a true relationship where one can depend on the other. And a track that is filled with hope, both lyrically rhythmically. The soft-harsh vocals are again the hero of the song, perfectly surrounded by an electric soft atmosphere. The end incorporates a gentle and immersive orchestra, like it’s none of our business.
This Thing We Got turns everything up again like a fashion show of feelings enlightened by the perfect indietronic cat-walk song. Again, although this is ultimately a romantic song, it does not shy away from any dancing vibes. And we like this thing we got.
In another feeling altercation, Mistakes to Make, enters subtly with a easy guitar-drop and exploring drums. The lyrics take central stage until a little revolution takes place. Beeping and tribal samples take the song by sudden without ever feeling less than genius. And when the vocals return, this is already a full cadenced song. Like a proper lesson from a mistake.
Wanderlust and Fickle Gods are the 7th and 8th tracks of The Kite String Tangle debut album, and the more easy-beat ones. Not by an instance we say they are inferior to the rest of the album. They just feel like a smooth transition to the final part of the long play. Catchy lyrics, catchy beats, typical flavoured Summer songs.
Selfish was the first advance of the debut album, and one we already talked about. At that time we’ve written that it is the perfect combination of pop and electronic, one that “sounds good in all its bits and wows” and characterised it as “a very egocentric contribution to our ears”. After a couple of months getting back to it constantly, we still think Selfish is a great powerful song. One we can ever resist.
The second and last collaboration of the album is entitled All I Need. Featuring another female vocalist (the one and only Montgomery), this track merges simplicity of beats, with clean spaces where the two voices construct a peaceful ambiance. Sometimes almost RnB, but with all the typical TKST elements, and even some piano chords. Everything is in the right place.
The closer of the album is another confident effort from the Australian multi-instrumentalist. The Devil You Know floats through so many different styles it kind of feels surreal. Sometimes it sounds almost like a Sade song, while in the next moment it blows everything around us with electronics layers after electronic layers. Like a chameleon, this rendition song is the perfect demonstration of Danny Harley talent to always sound true to himself. Not easy to walk away, at all.
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