This album first took root in my head on a busy and cramped train journey where it’s hard to enjoy a Kit Kat, let alone appreciate good music... Or so I thought. It wasn’t instantly obvious what Hello Creatures' enduring features were, despite three full repeats of quiet enjoyment and being miraculously unaffected by annoying commuters! I then realised that it possesses a remarkable subtlety, variety and depth that rewards and grows on you each time you listen to it. Its ambient, progressive sound resonates brightly and lifts you up unlike any album I’ve heard so far this year.
I am new to Let’s Say We Did and have heard nothing of their previous work so I don’t know where this album stands in terms of their other efforts. As a new listener, though, I found it to be an excellent introduction to the band’s shoegazey, melancholic sound and I’m sure established fans would agree that it has many strong characteristics. The thing that struck me initially was how well structured the album was, which sounds a bit pedantic but hear me out. The album starts off with the jangly, distortion-laden anthem Into Wherever that screams Jesus and Mary Chain; the album then continues in this vein with a softer, but no less catchy, anthem Hey Kid. The next few tracks gradually lower the tempo and cool things down a bit with smooth synth sounds, like in Sound Asleep which is aptly very chilled. The pace continues to fluctuate in this nice wavy fashion where these styles evolve and overlap brilliantly. Personally I like that very smooth and progressive structure, and it reminds me of when mixtapes were still all the rage and making the perfect one with limited space was almost an art form. Hello Creatures is a relatively short album so it is crucial to structure it well, and the band definitely have.
There are no real standout tracks on this album, as it melts together very nicely to the point where it feels like one 31 minute track. Though if I had to choose I think Seemingly Unfit would be my pick as I like its understated, dark tone and it reminds me a lot of Slowdive: all very good things in my book. I also did really like the first two ambient anthems that really kick things off and are an instant hook to new fans like myself. Let’s Say We Did are certainly comparable to many of their Swedish indie contemporaries, but they balance the lighter and more upbeat sound with the subtle lyrics and melodies very well, which I think sets them apart from most.
Hello Creatures is a great little album and certainly a grower; be sure to give it a few listens as you will find interesting little niches that will make you want to return to it again. Although preferably do this in the comfort of your own home and not on public transport - the person sitting opposite me was annoyed that I was unknowingly tapping my feet on his luggage! Perhaps I should have recommended the album to him?
Hello Creatures by Let’s Say We Did is out on 10th April via Nesna Records