Fickle Friends released their debut album,You Are Someone Else, this year, and the band from Brighton created one irresistible, upbeat, synth-pop compilation. This record is your immediate go to for needing an instant lift, as each track successfully forces you to want to move.
You Are Someone Else kicks off with the perfect opener, “Wake Me Up”. It builds, becomes a sing along, and features some fantastic synth throughout. “Glue” picks up the pace and is undeniably groovy. “Swim” is everything that is great about Fickle Friends, especially the guitar solo. The guitar work, in general, may be understated in much of the record. But when it kicks in, it adds a whole new, awesome layer to tracks like “Swim”, “Lovesick”, “Say No More”, and even on slower numbers such as “Paris”.
Most of the tracks’ subject matter revolves around relationships. The band does get a bit more transparent on “Hard To Be Myself”, which tackles the struggles with social anxiety and not being able to feel comfortable even around your friends. Even though the subject matter is a bit serious, the band is able to package it up with a nice shiny and glossy bow of ’80s-inspired synth pop. “In My Head” also shows another serious side and the reality of touring and being in a long distance relationship. “Rotation” is probably the one track that sounds a bit different than the others. The tune is a bit more industrial and choppy than their other smoother synth pop tracks. It is a nice departure and shows their growth in the production department.
The energy on You Are Someone Else might be anxious, but it’s impossible not to find yourself dancing. It’s without a doubt one of the year’s finest pop debuts. From the great vocals to the funky bass lines to the ripping guitar and oh-so-catchy synth, they’ve truly created an aesthetic throughout the record. It feels very much like it could have come out of the 1980s, but it’s got a modern feel that proves their talent in the indie-pop arena.
Fickle Friends are Natassja Shiner, keyboardist Jack Wilson, bassist Harry Herrington, drummer Sam Morris, and guitarist Chris Hall
You Are Someone Else was released on Interscope and the band’s own Palmeira Music label.
To review the first 25 of our Favorite Albums of 2018, click here.
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