Newcastle’s Fractions are possibly the archetypal modern indie pop band. Ideas were formulated by the band members sending their individual contributions back and forth from their own “secluded home studios”. Their first EP definitely shows their talents but at times their EP does sound like five musicians competing against each other.
The portentous ‘Into The Earth’ presents a doomy atmosphere made further unnerving by sharp stabs of electronica. An enticing beginning but slightly misleading given what is to follow. The exuberant ‘Burst’ is noteworthy for Lucy Gallagher’s strident vocals backed up by some equally strident bass guitar whilst synth washes weave attractively in between; comparisons will be made with New Order although New York’s Elika are possibly a closer match.
‘Breathe’ is the epitome of shiny, 21st Century pop; there’s a strong chorus but the mix buries the vocals somewhat under a collision of beats and synths, thereby diluting the impact. It’s the first occasion when the band sound like they’re trying to out-do each other rather than perform as a collective unit. To some extent, ‘Resist’ suffers from too many cooks as well but the underlying hooks are undoubtedly solid whilst the finale, ‘Fate’, begins subtly enough but then explodes into rather shapeless nugaze.
Fractions are not quite the sum of their parts yet but these issues could be ironed out quite easily, simply by making their songs less busy. Furthermore, a leaner, more collaborative approach would be advisable for any future releases to elevate them from promising talents to electronic/dream pop heroes.
Elika, The Other Two, Dubstar