Review of We Come From The Same Place Album by Allo Darlin'

This (mostly) London-based four piece make music far sunnier than it seems possible for the famously variable British weather to permit. Indie pop, twee pop or whatever you want to label them, Allo Darlin' make lovely, listenable music which draws you inextricably to smiling and foot tapping.

Allo Darlin' We Come From The Same Place Album

Continuing their seemingly traditional biennial album release plan ('Allo Darlin'' in 2010 and 'Europe' in 2012), Allo Darlin''s third offering appears almost exactly four years after their self-titled debut. The usual instrumental and vocal trademarks are unmissable and unmistakable, and in characteristic style it readily embraces downbeat topics in a staunchly upbeat manner.

Penned in quite a whirlwind of productivity, lead singer Elizabeth Morris notes that many of the songs were created during a time where songwriting came particularly naturally. This rapid pace certainly does not come across musically, though there is a sense of ease and flow between the tracks that may be belied by this unfamiliar approach.

Many songs err on the melancholic, with strong undertones or explicit nods to romances and friendships gained, sustained or lost. 'Heartbeat' plays out like a sad, slow-dance of hope and regret, slide guitar ringing out an atmospheric counterpoint to the lyrics. 'Kings and Queens' evokes peculiar recollections of early Frank Turner efforts, trimmed a little with subversiveness and punctuated by electric riffs. 'Another Year' sees the band at their most lyrically playful, boarding a 'no frills plane' on a neurotic adventure of love and change.

Allo Darlin' are masters of the subtle, and not so subtle, reference with 'Half-Heart Necklace', boasting Twin Peaks-allusions (and allegedly based on a bizarre true story from Elizabeth's hometown about a girl who disappeared and was presumed murdered before being found hiding at her boyfriend's house and was subsequently charged with wasting police time). 'Romance and Adventure' makes for a quick dance-party break before falling into the final few tracks. 'Angela' is a late highlight, with its lingering refrain 'the hardest thing we ever have to learn, is when those we love don't love us in return'.

Straying occasionally in to the saccharine, but mostly treading the path of sublime sugary goodness, 'We Come From The Same Place' manages the impressive feat of being simultaneously sweet, smart and significant when nailing even one of those is quite a trick!

Carla Washbourne


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