The days of indie bands belonging to just one genre are certainly becoming less common. In the case of Crash Island, a four-piece based in London but with roots in France, Spain and South Africa, the group source their influences from electronica, rock, soul, pop and funk. It could have sounded like a mess. It doesn’t.
On the face of it there’s a sense of confused identity to Crash Island. ‘Nothing’s Fine’ is heavy on guitars, synths, pounding rhythms and anguished vocals. If that sounds over-busy then be reassured by the fact that the group know their way around a hook-laden melody. ‘Soul Train’ takes a more streamlined approach but also packs a lot into its four minute length. ‘Leaving Me Roar’ is the one track which leaves doubts. In the context of otherwise fine musicianship, the bouncy, uptempo chorus seems out of place. There are no such worries with ‘Living Dead’, however, as the group rediscover their muse to unveil their strongest and most urgent song to date.
Even if Crash Island do appear to want to be all things to all men, their songs have plenty of substance and often emerge with triple-barbed melodies. So far so good but the true test will be to see whether they can sustain that form over the course of a whole album.
Crash Island Bandcamp