The five piece band return with their studio album O Shudder. The band epitomises the well-trodden route of college band hopefuls made good. They have, over the last six years, grown and now have built a solid fan base. As if to prove that their career wasn’t going well enough, they even have a burger named after them at one of Manchester’s finest eateries.
These foundations have seen them support Paramore, and the band have just been announced to perform at The Great Escape Festival in Brighton, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.
In describing their sound it’s too simplistic to say that they continue in the great tradition of British indie pop art school bands. The band packs a few surprises and they are far from a conventional sounding band. Frontman Duncan Wallis leads the aesthetically pleasing, well groomed band. Just before the band’s appearance hits your eyes, its Wallis’ vocals that hit your ears. His dulcet tones can be described as sounded androgynous with a hefty dose of Wild Beasts with a hint of a wailing Kate Bush. The track ‘Given Thing’ in particular displays his full range as a vocalist, as he launches into high pitched melodramatic verse.
It’s not just the vocals that set Dutch Uncles apart from other bands. Not content with attempting an almost unique style of presentation. It is the band’s subject matter that is as distinctive as Wallis’ vocals. The lead single from the album is entitled ‘Decided Knowledge’, and the band have explained that the subject matter came from an unsuccessful job interview. Not only did this amuse the band, it also made them realise that an office job was simply not for them. So the local council’s loss is our gain. They possess the ability to comment on modern day themes as well as their own growing pains, therefore their subject matter relates to the adaption of the disappearance of youth. The band has all but settled into the dreaded twenty-somethings, and they deliver a narrative of it with a tongue-in-cheek sensibility.
Their off-key subject matter and relaxed delivery allows the album to wash over the ears. It is clear that they feel comfortable in their own progress over the past six years as their sound is now perfectly refined.