KYTE – Science For The Living (Rallye)

Kyte are an unknown band who were recommended on a blog, and it turned out to be one of my best decisions to try them. The Leicestershire quartet produce haunting pop songs which are both melodic and atmospheric, and the band have been hotly tipped for great things. This album is not actually out for a while, as it has only been released in Japan so far, but you need to hear them now, so head for their myspace page and give them a listen. The album opens with the brooding ‘Eyes Lose Their Fire’, while ‘Bridges In The Sky’ has a bit of electronica showing, with some bubbling synth running through the track. Next up comes ‘Solsbury Hill’ and before I get a chance to write ‘not the Peter Gabriel tune’, it turns out that it is! I have not heard a cover of this song before, and Kyte’s version is reverential enough, but at the same time they are not afraid to stretch it out and give it an ethereal quality that was missing from the original. ‘The Smoke Saves Lives’ has some solid drumming, and the washes of synth at the end add just the right touch. ‘The Lost Blood’ builds slowly into a good up-tempo track with a memorable hook – not exactly single material but a good introduction to the music if you can hear it. ‘Two Sparks’ is another piece with an electro feel to it, but it is the piano and breathy vocals which make the track, and ‘No-one Is Angry, Just Afraid’ is another song that, while not exactly commercial, is instantly accessible. ‘Fake Handshakes, Earnest Smiles’ uses the synths to give the song an 80’s electro-pop feel, but without making it too retro, and ‘Creating Our Reality’ ends the album with an epic eleven minute soundscape, the last two thirds of which is a relaxing, ambient come-down. The Japanese version of the album come with four bonus tracks, including a Joy Formidable remix of the opening song, so if you find that you like the band then that is not only the best value, but it is also available now. If there is one over-riding factor about this album, it is that I loved it on first hearing, and yet it is quite hard to think of someone to compare them to. Both of these points weigh heavily in the band’s favour, as finding music that I have not heard a hundred times before is becoming harder and harder, and so I am pleased that Kyte have appeared to make it for me.
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