With a growing number of bands introducing aspects of electronic and dance music into the ever growing genre of indie music, it was going to be a tall order for a London based trio to stand out from the crowd. However, with a large proportion of Is Tropical's material being leaked before they released their debut album, the initial response was good. After a year of touring with 'Egyptian Hip Hop' the album was released just in time for summer, an overriding theme throughout the album.
The opening track of the album 'South Pacific', one of the singles that was released in 2010, has a sound that is very appropriate considering the name of the track and the band, a feel good anthem providing strong imagery of the traditional beach holiday. The second track 'Land Of The nod' is full of arpeggiated synth riffs and dreamy, distorted vocals, it is clear that creating a catchy hook is definitely one of Is Tropicals strengths, reminiscent of Klaxons or Mystery Jets. The hummable melodies in tracks like 'The Greeks' and 'Clouds' make for a satisfying listen, whilst the thick, synthesized bass lines in 'What???', 'Think We're Alone', and 'Zombies' demand to be danced to. The final track 'Seasick Mutiny', like a couple of others on the album, wouldn't sound out of place in a nightclub, with the minimal lyrics and breakdown section ticking the boxes for a modern dance hit. The album as a whole highlights Is Tropical's versatility, moving from the sparkling pop choruses of 'I'll Take My Chances' to nu rave anthems like 'The Greeks' and 'Zombies'.
Native To is definitely a successful debut and makes for a thoroughly pleasurable first listen. Their electro pop sound is definitely catchy and enjoyable, but when you delve deeper into the album in an attempt to explore the sounds and layers that are often found on the second or third listen of an album, in this case, there isn't much else other than the immediate riffs and hooks which greet you at first listen. Native To isn't necessarily memorable but the array of sounds and electronics, which are used to great effect, have a real appeal.