The Cubical - Arise Conglomerate Album Review
When Noel Gallagher describes your band as 'f***in' mega' it would obviously be taken as a tremendous compliment. But, then again, it also brings pressure to focus the mind knowing a bigger audience will be watching you. So you had better deliver.
This is the predicament that Liverpool band The Cubical finds themselves in with their third album, 'Arise Conglomerate'.
The band is led by impressionable vocalist Dan Wilson, who has a voice beyond his years and who, if you didn't see on the album cover, would make you think his voice belonged to someone from an old 50s blues number. 'On the weekend' is the first single taken from 'Arise Conglomerate' and the first track on the album, and it kicks things off in an upbeat fashion with Wilson's voice always being the force that drives the band forward.
The lo-fi like production on 'Daily Grind' is a great way of capturing the title and lyrics to the song. On 'Prisoner of our Love', Wilson paints a convincing picture of a man feeling stuck in a relationship with someone that he cannot escape from.
Although Wilson's voice is what people will pick up on most, the rest of the band; Alex Gavaghan, Mark Percy, Johnny Green and Craig Bell; all come into their own with their respective instruments.
As a whole, the band are more suited to the upbeat tracks that feature on 'Arise Conglomerate' as they are great exhibitions of their musicianship and allows for the listener to sing along to. This is particularly the case on '123 girl' where Wilson sings:
"I want love. Baby I want love". The problem is that the upbeat songs are over too quickly and some of the slower paced songs drag their heels into the might-press-the-skip-button territory.
'Arise Conglomerate' is not a bad collection of songs. Some of them clearly do have enough hooks and grooves to catch Noel Gallagher's attention. The band now just have to keep plugging away doing what they are doing. It would be unfair to say it is a cult following that the band has. That would be a disservice because they have played in countries all over the world. It could be argued they are in that sort of limbo stage of getting bigger but still that little bit away from the mainstream consciousness.