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Colourtide - Underwater
Tidal Sound
By Ben Ohmart
(more articles from this author)
2001-06-21
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Artist: Colourtide (www.colourtide.com)
Title: Underwater
Label: Tidal Sound
Genre: Pop

Colourtide is an odd pop band. Like Pet Shop Boys and the like, they blend keyboard into catchy vocals and strange ballads you won't find washing up on the usual shore. As influences they site Blue Nile, Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno, John Martyn, and it's certainly easy to see them. Perhaps Colourtide isn't quite as epic, but for some of Eno, this would be just what you might expect on some Nerve Net, etc.

The band contains: Aidan O'Driscoll (guitars, keys, sequencing) and John Brennan (voice, keys, sequencing). Plus guests for backing voices, bass, drums and drum programming. While I'm not crazy about their synth on the whole, some tracks work better than others. Just the difference between 2 tracks that sit beside each other, 'Let's Go Out Tonight' and 'Remember' is quite a skip, with 'Remember' having a much tighter sound and more professional backdrop of keys. Which is interesting since there are no guests on this one, just the 2 guys.

If you're wondering where the u comes from in Colourtide, it's because this unsigned band is from Ireland (Cork City, actually) where they are attempting to catch the world via the internet. Selling the cd thru cdstreet.com, featuring on mp3.com and vitaminic.co.uk, not to mention www.irishbandslive.co.uk, these guys are slowly making their own niche market, notch by notch.

'Shelter Her From Pain' is a good dark source of vitamins, with some splashing and very believable synth drums. John Brennan's voice sounds best here, raising his tongue almost to a subdued scream, where the title of the song comes back over and over, infiltrating your mind like the best of Simply Red.

Were this jazz, I'd call this band a secluded, intimate band concentrating more on the interaction between listener and member. John's voice lends itself to quieter scrutiny for such a private setting. I personally wouldn't mind them throwing in an instrumental somewhere, considering what the music is. But as is, it's good alt-pop candy from a direction not readily thought of as Ireland.


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