Man Without Country subscribe to the school of thought that electronic music should be of epic proportions. It turns out to be a good move in the skilled hands of Welsh duo Tomas Greenhalf and Ryan James who chose their name to convey their “sense of not belonging”.
Even though ‘Foe’ sounds like its sung by a droid, the melodic core to the song is a good indicator for quality of the remainder of the album. There can be few more impressive contributions than ‘Clipped Wings’. Its glistening synth hook is bolstered by Greenhalf’s vocals which swoop and soar between yearning melancholy and impressive falsetto. The bird-inspired titles continue with ‘Migrating Clay Pigeon’; a track that is as ingenious as the title, thanks to its Klaxons-esque take on rave music. Even when their lyrics border on White Lies-style awkwardness (“You are a mild irritation like a stone in my shoe”) they sound endearing rather than annoying and with mighty songs like ‘Iceberg’ and ‘Closet Addicts Anonymous’ at their disposal, it’s easy to see why their music is popular with Radio 1 DJs and disaffected youth alike.
Man Without Country may think big but Greenhalf and James have the writing and arranging skills to back up their ambitious soundscapes. Infact, it’s doubtful there will be an album out this year which demonstrate a better mixture of geeky, lovelorn lyrics and the power of popular electronic melody.
Delphic, White Lies, Foster The People, Mirror Talk