This Et Al
Figure Eight EP
Having been away for what seems like a lifetime (but is actually only a little over twelve months), it's a welcome return for Leeds' unsung heroes This Et Al.
Possibly the most difficult band to fit into any kind of stereotypical, genre-centric pigeonhole of recent times, the 'Figure Eight EP' once again confounds and confuses in equal measures across its four tracks. If prizes were given out for consistently challenging their audience, This Et Al would surely be in pole position every time, as each song here takes on a whole new identity of its own, the sole recognisable factor on the first three at least being singer Wu's distinctive falsetto.
What this means of course is that the musical trajectory is ever-changing, from the title track's neo-classical Muse-like waltz, through the all-out rock bluster of 'Medicine Hammer' to the ambient shoegaze of 'Ice Age'.
Pick of the bunch though is the closing '(The Tale Of) Frosty Jackson' which sees This Et Al dipping their toes in more experimental waters, creating an instrumental passage that is more cinematic montage than post-rock excess, and hopefully something that paves the way for future excursions into similar territories.
A timely comeback for a ridiculously underrated, yet ultimately influential band.