Nine Black Alps - Sirens

‘Sirens’ is the sign of a band not afraid to mix it up a bit.

Label: Brew Records

Rating: 7

It’s easy to feel a little bit sorry for Nine Black Alps, despite teetering on the brink of mainstream since 2005 and winning plaudits aplenty back in the day, it never really happened for them. A hiatus, new label, and a couple of personnel changes, and they’re back with fourth long player, ‘Sirens’.

If we’re honest, it doesn’t start well, ‘Be My Girl’ is easily one of the worst tracks on here. But things do pick up; ‘My One And Only’ sticks with the garage rock aesthetic that the Mancunian quartet have built their reputations on, whilst ‘Phosphorescence’ allows NBA to emerge from underneath the heavy riffs and prove their songwriting metal.

‘Waiting Room’ is the true gem on the record though, all fragile with gentle harmonies, and the exact right hint of strings over a neatly plucked guitar. It feels as though it’s on the wrong record completely; although by positioning it in the centre of the album, it’s clear that the band know that too. You would hope that it’s an indication of a band not afraid to mix it up a bit, because thus far down the line, that would be a very good sign indeed.