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Slowly Slowly’s Ben Stewart didn’t want to write another “sad-boy” record.
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We’ve all heard tales of bleary-eyed sleep deprivation and cigarette smoke self-loathing, wrapped in a foggy blanket of melancholy. They’re comforting and familiar, however, for diehard fans of emo and indie rock, these narratives can often feel tired.
It’s been an undeniably whirlwind two years for the Melbourne band, who released their acclaimed debut record St. Leonards in early 2018. Since then, tours with the Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Amy Shark, triple j domination and festival domination have stacked the band’s impressive resume, sending them to the forefront of Australia’s alt-rock scene.
On Race Car Blues, Slowly Slowly’s second full-length, the band wholly actualise a vision of positivity and hope—it’s sombre in pivotal moments, however, provokes a pondering on the light at the end of the tunnel. There’s no time to give into the easy temptations of self-hatred here.
With a vision that sets them apart from the dreary, by the numbers pack and a knack for hooks like no other, Race Car Blues will see the band dominate the near future of the genre.
Bellowing with Stewart’s signature, percussive vocal delivery, roaring opening track Creature Of Habit offers a poignant reflection on the last two years. Thundering into an anthemic chorus, teetering towards fully blown alt-rock raucous, the track showcases how the band have refined their songwriting since their The Hotelier-inspired, emo-revival leaning, twinkly debut.
Slowly Slowly bask in a vulnerability and realism that acts of lesser musical and lyrical abilities would falter aiming towards—shining tremendously on the heart-string tugging ‘19’, pulling and tugging between tension created in the staccato instrumental and love-lorn vocal performance.
Self-realisation and a rally-cry to arms comes in the form of emotional apex, Michael Angelo, a rousing banger that’s sure to incite many flailing arms to come, with Suicidal Evangelist showcasing some of the record’s most confronting lyrics.
Exuberant and youthful to the nth degree, the charm exuded on smash-hit Jellyfish swoons with confidence, whilst Bec Stevens featuring Safety Switch is one of the most compelling pop punk hits the genre has seen in years.
Making a conscious effort to look on the bright side of life and shake old habits, Slowly Slowly have crafted what will undoubtedly be one of the year’s premier rock releases. With a vision that sets them apart from the dreary, by the numbers pack and a knack for hooks like no other, Race Car Blues will see the band dominate the near future of the genre.
STANDOUT TRACKS: 19, Michael Angelo, Creature Of Habit
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