Album Review: The Loud Bangs – Kiss Me There

I love The Loud Bangs and I’ve made no secret of that. Since discovering the Los Angeles, USA-based shoegaze outfit last summer, I’ve been all over their prolific release schedule and shared five EP releases of theirs. It’s all accumulated to Kiss Me There a two disc-collection featuring remodels of seven of their most notable tracks, and some new ones to boot.

By Graeme Smith

It might feel a little early in The Loud Bangs’ career for a greatest hits album, but Kiss Me There isn’t exactly that. Seven of its ten tracks have featured on previous releases but this collection gives them a new edge, and there are three brand new tracks. It’s the start of a trilogy for the band, who have released two more similar collections, Get Sent There and The Never Never Forever and Ever.

We start with Spectral Field which is a recreation of the track that originally opened the Salvation Memorial Hospital EP. The remodelling gives it a richer, clearer sound but we don’t lose the signature low vocals and hypnotic instrumental arrangement. Salvation Memorial Hospital focussed on relationships and there’s a intimate sense of romance about the track. It’s the perfect start.

Candy Sometimes Always, from (Exit) Future Plaza, ups the energy with a driving soft rock arrangement and angelic vocals. Electroprize, Sex Complex and This Is A Japanese Robot, from Stray Honey, close the first disc giving us sludgy riffs, sultry sentiments and a psychedelic tribute to the ’90s Manchester scene respectively.

Circus Mirror and Ex Doll, from Why Things Fray, open the second disc. The former is slow and moody, dragging you into an uncertain bliss while the latter is a delicate cosmic trip. Then we get to the original tracks, starting with Pretty Checked Out. It oozes with an indie rock energy and shows us a bright and breezy side to The Loud Bangs sound. Avery Parkway opens dreamily ambient building to a rich, cinematic composition before Play Dates closes the collection with a hazy effort that mixes nostalgia with precariousness.

As a fan, it’s wonderful to revisit some of The Loud Bangs previous work, and it’s a bonus to get some fresh sounds too. For those who haven’t been following their music, Kiss Me There, along with their two other new collections, should provide a good intro. They are, in my opinion, the most overlooked band out there at the moment. This summer could change all that.

You can check out Kiss Me There below.