Album Review


There’s probably just enough of whichever aspect won fans over in the first place to be rewarding.


The secret to PAWS’ longevity - this being their fifth full-length - lies perhaps in the Scottish outfit’s ability to sit in the middle of a crowded Venn diagram. At points it echoes the math-rock leanings of Midwest emo, or even the OTT bombast of The Hold Steady; at others closer to home via the explosive heart-on-sleeve indie of Los Campesinos! or the melancholy of Scottish rock titans such as Idlewild or Frightened Rabbit. Similarly the group’s use of lo-fi aesthetics - see the vocal effects of ‘Unfiltered’ and ‘One Nation Under DOG’ for example, or layered guitar sounds of ‘Disenchanted’ - mean it would slot in just as easily among releases from the late-1980s nascent college rock scene as the likes of METZ or Japandroids, to name but two fans of fuzz. Whether that ultimately leaves PAWS without a distinct voice for themselves is arguable - the outfit have long been praised for their lyrical candour, but much of Phillip Jon Taylor’s vocal is barely discernible here - but for their longstanding fans there’s probably just enough of whichever aspect won them over in the first place to be rewarding.

Tags: PAWS, Reviews, Album Reviews

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