Review: Orange Island “Self-Titled”

Orange Island
Self-Titled”
(Triple Crown)

Well, the guitars seem a little bit too loud, but there’s not a whole lot to dislike about this hard rocking indie gem. It’s feels sort of weird to listen to an indie album these days where the singer doesn’t scream, huh? I mean, we’re falling all over ourselves because we love Thursday and Thrice and The Bled and stuff and we all seem to have forgotten that there was a time when singers actually sang. Weird, I know. Orange Island takes the graininess of Elliot and the emotional baggage of Hot Rod Circuit and creates a self-reflexive bit of musicology that makes statements like, “Don’t validate those words with the sound of a gun like that Kurt Cobain…/ So get drunk on the blood of your Christ on every Irish Saturday night.” Strong stuff, and given the understated delivery, you can actually understand it. Wild. While the production value drops this release a few notches under, say, the new Brand New record, it’s still a solid piece of post-punk malaise, one with staying power and killer lyrics. And don’t go thinking that I’m sitting here dissing the screamers either, ‘cos you know I dig my screamo bands. Hater.

Brian Greenaway