Sundara Karma - Youth Is Only Ever Fun In Retrospect (Review)

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What is widely regarded as 'Hipster' music is something that is incredibly hit or miss to me, there are certain artists that really establish themselves both citically and in terms of a wide fan base - The 1975 - but there are also those whom completely miss the mark and it's almost as if people listen to it ironically, much like Gangnam Style or something. However, Sundara Karma are from the latter, after two good EP's in 2015 alone they hit us with more music this year in terms of their debut album, Youth is Only Ever Fun in Retrospect. An incredibly long and damning title, yet very earnest and truthful at the same time. Leading up to the album I did think that they were the latter of my aforementioned point, but when I pressed play on this album I feel that it all clicked in to place.

The album opens with A Young Understanding, a very soulful melodic track, built in such a way that it's going to stick in your head for days, if it weren't for the whole album being so catchy. What Sundara Karma appear to have captured is a sound that is still very underground and for from mainstream yet still so out there and, ironically, very mainstream indie rock. In parts it does step into a realm of pop, with songs like Olympia. However, the album really peaks with the incredible track Happy Family, this is one of those rare tracks where it evolves as you listen and with no real structure to the track, sometimes it's very unexpected. What the track does though is induct a very folky acoustic guitar reminiscent of a Mumford & Sons track until the drum begins to kick in and then we are treated to the full plethora of the song on offer.

One negative about the album is that despite being under 50 minutes long, the album feels much longer because the tone of the album very rarely changes to the extent where it feels very monotonous after 6-7 songs. Despite the overbearing safety of the album, it's still a very good album albeit a little inconsistent at times with the blaring difference of influences on the songs. Which leaves the album feeling very peculiar at times and yet still the songs feel the same. Despite this though, it's one of my favourite releases this year so far, due to the fact that what it does, it does a lot, but it's incredibly good at it. If it aint broke, dont fix it.

7/10

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