Gengahr – Where Wildness Grows Review

When you first hear the title of Gengahr’s second LP – Where Wildness Grows – you might think that it could signify a more experimental, more ‘out-there’ album than their previous. No. But that’s not necessarily a bad thing; the album is a subtle, shimmery nod to a chilled summer playlist, with the wildest thing to come from it being a solid Gengahr identity emerging from behind the shrubbery.

Where Wildness Grows cements a definite sound for the London four-piece. Many of the songs (Pull Over (Now), Before Sunrise, Is This How You Love) find their greatest assets in their twinkling, echoic riffs; they give the otherwise-basic-indie tracks extra buoyancy, something to remember them by. Each song is wonderfully layered and textured – take the eponymous Where Wildness Grows, for example, which sizzles with minor distortion and shudders with bass, juxtaposing the delicate vocals of Felix Bushe and the quiet finger picking on the guitar. However, Mallory is the track to sum up the album best: rich with different flavours and a range of sounds that are so fluent, it feels like relaxing on a pool lounger.

While many of the tracks sparkle in the sunlight, others a darker and gloomier. An track list highlight is single Carrion, in which an eerier intro paves way for a rock-centred labyrinth of fierce guitars and a pulsating bass. Whole Again begins in the same vein, with thrashing guitars leading the way, but drifts softly back into the colourful pool of indie rock we’ve already come to know. The instrumental section at the end, however, is something quite wonderful, and as a conclusion to the track list, works excellently. Even the songs that divert from Where Wildness Grows’ framework don’t seem out of place; the album flows pretty nicely.

Well, maybe too nicely. A lot of the tracks sound the same. While the slightly-edgy agenda of a pretty riff, some kind of percussion and chords lying on top works very well indeed, it’s also kind of boring. There’s no doubt that this is an ideal album to relax to for any indie fan, but maybe not one to enjoy with any particular fervour.

Gengahr – Where Wildness Grows: 7/10

Ellie Chivers

Single Review – Gengahr – Carrion

Carrion’s sweeping and menacing entrance is the first indicator of the darker themes Gengahr’s latest single tackles. The guitars roar louder, the lyrics are pithier and the bass is gloomier. It’s also one of their best tracks. The sporadic softness of Felix Bushe compliments the rush of instrumentalism perfectly, while the harmonic chorus feels wonderfully rustic (although it does seem like the vocal gets swallowed somewhat by the instrumentalism, I do kind of like it like that). The track has its own rules; it’s a bit unpredictable, with the highlight being a guitar solo to precede the chorus finale. Its speedy; its irrepressible; it’s the kind of strong composition Gengahr need to make it onto the indie mainstream. It’s really, really good.

Ellie Chivers

Gengahr – A Dream Outside Review

The debut album from London-based psych-rock band Gengahr is a fantastic follow up to their initial 2014 singles ‘Powder’ and ‘Bathed in Light’. A Dream Outside has a little something for everyone; it’s poppy, rocky, and a little bit electronic-y. There’s a bright, bubbly tone to all of Gengahr’s tracks; they have hints of OK Go, Soulwax, Unknown Mortal Orchestra and the Pixies, but their gentle psychedelic undertone gives them just enough edge to stand alone rather than as alt-rock copycats.

The entire album is filled with snappy percussion, fuzzy guitar and high soprano vocals. The band chop and change between sweet-sounding, light numbers such as ‘Lonely As A Shark’ and ‘Trampoline’ and louder tracks with vigorous electric guitar and fuzz pedals. Standout tracks include addictive opener ‘Dizzy Ghosts’, the frantic drumbeats and rumbling bass of ‘Embers’ and the wonderful ‘Where I Lie’ which has a much darker edge than everything else on the album. The light, sweet lead vocals off-set the ominous lyrics of monsters and “creeping crawlers” perfectly.

Another favourite is ‘Dark Star’, an instrumental number which, halfway through the album, offers a nice reprieve from the intense soprano vocals. This could be the soundtrack to a night in a hip gin bar, and is a demonstration of Genghar’s talent for creating fun soundscapes rich with differing riffs and textures. With something new to notice with each listen, A Dream Outside is definitely an album which grows on you and leaves you with catchy little hooks and riffs flitting around your mind. It’s an excellent debut from this up and coming ensemble.

Gengahr – A Dream Outside = 7/10

Ellie Scott @elliemaryscott

Single Review – Gengahr – She’s A Witch

Ahead of their untitled debut album in May London based band Gengahr release a new track, ‘She’s a Witch’ set to be released on March 16th. After the attention surrounding the band post release of their two singles, ‘powder’ and, ‘bathed in light’ they seamlessly execute another indie classic. The vocals and guitar synchronize in perfect harmony throughout the song complimenting each other as the bass keeps the track grounded and creeping forward. The chorus is infectious and a stand out point of this single, mesmerising and repetitive it begs for a crowd to echo it back and by the end of the track you’ll be hard pressed to not find it engrained in your mind.  This deliciously haunting anthem pleads for huge stages and venues which won’t be a problem for this band if the album released in May is anything similar.

Dominic Naughton