The Race - In My Head it Works

Miss Fliss 09/03/2009

Rating: 2.5/5

I'm pleased to see The Race are still a going concern, in these precarious, changeable times for the young, striving indie band. They were an incredible live experience when I saw them back in 2006, all Cure style pop sweep and Sigur Rós grandiosity, interspersed with jerky indie activity.

In My Head it Works is the kind of album that rushes and washes over you, like a great tidal wave. The feeling is pleasant - it's just instantly forgettable. The tunes are sometimes there, but songs ebb easily into one another to form one big jumble, and then before you know it it's all over and you're left wondering what exactly happened.

The passion The Race have is mightily evident, palpably so, with intensely delivered vocals, dramatic drumming, and energetic guitars melding into the heralding of the strength of strings. You almost get caught up in the bluster, but something holds you back. The choruses are desperate to grab our attention, and they just don't quite reel you in or knock you over. It's the sound of a band who've had the chance to work with a big name producer (Dave Eringa) and they're letting him take over. The word overblown comes to mind at times. Quiet, intimate, slow moments like Moorwood are when The Race get the chance to breeze along nicely.

The trouble with these times is that bands are seldom afforded (literally) the time to develop. This is the second album from the young Reading-based fivesome and I get the feeling that album number three could be where they really rear their talent - if they're given the chance to stick around that long. Less forced bluster, less sheen, and more focus on letting the songs run free of their own accord and the melodies strike out instead of getting buried in the mix and lost, and The Race could become a band to hold close to your heart.

The Race Myspace
Shifty Disco Records