[Reviewed by Peter Marks]
They kept it short, so I’ll do the same. Rather than try to carry on as they had done, Cold Showers opted to polish their next album until it glowed; eight tracks which move through the full range of emotional responses. If ‘Matter of Choice’ is even 40 minutes I’ll be surprised. You are whisked along as these four deliver song after song which only leaves you wanting more. They excel at pulling you into their world with just a few casual notes. The sleeve art is going to provoke it’s fair share of comparisons and I’m sure the music will as well.
If you want to hear their influences then you most certainly will and that’s fine, you’ll miss the other 98% of the equation but hell if you can smugly sit about with your friends and bask in their adoration then be my guest. Thing is, I heard them right upfront but then this band did what I can only hope more will do: they dropped them back off in the past where they belong and went their own way. I know most of my generation don’t want to hear that or experience it but that’s what the deal is.
Cold Showers have the ability to go from pure majesty to drab, maudlin gloom in under four minutes.
I’m speaking of the breakout tune on here “Whatever You Want” when I discuss elegant majesty and the redux version of “Crowds” when referencing gloomy surroundings. Funny thing about that version of “Crowds”, it was the b-side to the single which introduced me to them and is still my favorite work from them. They pep it up on side one but the power it has when concluding the record on side two is epic. The last time a band did a move similar to this was on an an LP called ‘Express’. Somehow, I doubt this is lost on them. Clever fellows.
One other nuance to mention is their prowess at integrating their sounds together so seamlessly on ‘Matter of Choice’. The prettier guitar parts on “Ceasefire” during the verses are like water swirling around an oar in the water. Their frontman at times sounds like he’s a reluctant one, burying his voice behind the effects his bandmates saturate these tunes with. I like how the bass alternates between live and programmed playing as do the drums (or perhaps this is just more production savvy I can’t fully discern) while delicate guitar lines meander about like lost children in a park after dusk.
Right, I’ve rambled on long enough. You should own this and don’t just go digital, get the vinyl because this band were made for it and the pressing is dead on target. No skips, static or slips and soon enough no copies left. Now you know.