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Spare Snare - Unicorn

posted 8 Jan 2018, 03:33 by Scene Alba Magazine

4 Stars

Spare Snare are one of those confusing bands that should be much bigger than they are but seem to languish in the margins of modern music. Absolutely loved by people who know them if only they could make the journey to more people’s ears.

‘Unicorn’ is yet another sinewy, nervous lo-fi offering, at times sounding anxious and paranoid then changing to a more optimistic feel. It has cold shards of ice in songs such as ‘Eyelash’ which is positively menacing or slow building pain such as ‘You’re Not Home’ in which vocalist Jan Burnett lets the anguish seep through every pore in his body then eventually it gathers into a howl.

It’s not a cosy album the lo-fi feel ushers in an uneasy sensation, even when the music is reasonably buoyant as ‘Not As Smart As You’ there always feels like a breakdown is in the post possibly this is why the music press has never fully embraced them, Spare Snare are difficult to pin down or to attach easily to any particular scene.
Sure they have contemporaries but they inhabit a world of their own. A difficult, fractured, pained world and this is it’s soundtrack which is made even more intense with its use of frankly terrifying radio samples the last of which talks of nuclear weapons in clipped American tones. Goodbye to the last of your restful sleep.

12 albums down for the Dundonian lo-fi heroes, Unicorn is a tense album and it’s a masterful collection but it requires you to stare into its soul and come out the other end a changed person. Hopefully for the better.