A horrible hack

Empire! Empire! (I Was A Lonely Estate)

When the Sea Became A Giant

Year Released: 2007
Format: CD
Label: self released
Reviewed by Andy Malcolm on Jan 31, 2008
We've been waiting long enough for the indie / emo revival, we had a few glimmers of activity, but it's never really gathered any momentum. Last year there was a spate of Cap'n Jazz wannabes (Algernon Cadwallader and Street Smart Cyclist amongst others), but that was about it. Then, out of nowhere came this superb debut EP from Empire! Empire! 5 tracks of delightfully twinkly, mellowed and softly played indie rock, coming on like a cross of Mineral, Benton Falls and Very Secretary. The songs meander and wander gently, building up, or falling down as required. The vocals are also soft, and work as an extra instrument. The production is dead on, everything is well balanced, nothing intrudes and it all handily feels like something from 1998.

I admit, I was quite happy to bash Deep Elm for all those years when they put out bands similar to this but I didn't realise that we were coming to the end of the run and shortly there would be no bands in the genre at all. It's a real shame. Luckily bands like Empire! Empire! and the Australian band Arrows, and Algernon Cadwallader are all more than capable and will make many feel wistful for a bygone emo age, when indie rock bands didn't mind being pansies who could make a bit of noise when required.

So, really good release here - lots of potential and good tunes to tide you over the rest of winter.
Recommended record by Collective Zine!

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