It’s not often that a band can launch a debut that is as mature and well-realized as Good Rumour’s Always Here. I had the pleasure of seeing Good Rumour—Edmonton’s new kids on the block—mostly by accident some months ago and was impressed and surprised by the members’ intimate live energy and sensitive and melancholic chord progressions. Reassuringly, these traits have translated well into the studio.
Anyone familiar with early Radiohead and perhaps other alternative indie darlings such as Bombay Bicycle Club or Real Estate will find certain similarities in the way Good Rumour crafts the ballads present in this debut. This is especially true in the first track, “Atlas,” where singer Liam Faucher delivers a soft bittersweet performance that cleanly needles its way through the silky instrumentation and slowly develops into a theatrical latter half.
“Hard To Find,” the EP’s promoted single, almost feels like a sibling or spiritual continuation of “Atlas,” having some impressive synergy that helps maintain the theme and feeling of the release as a whole. What stuck out immediately in this specific track was the unconditional rhythm section that breathes extra life into the verses.
The dynamic instrumentation of the band is essential in making sure the run-time of the debut feels earned, which is mostly successful.The playful synth intro from “The Fool” evolves into compounding electric guitars, the sonic hills and valleys are ever-present and well-placed within the writing making it a personal favourite from the EP.
Unfortunately the run-time slightly overstays its welcome in “Cold Sweat,” despite the soothing and catchy chorus and the delicate atmospheric guitar raining down in the background.
“Montrose” is the final song on the EP, a worthy closer and the most optimistic sounding song out of the five. Guitarist Arnel Ethier delivers many tasteful lines throughout and breaks free into a solo after the invigorating chanted outro, which punctuates Always Here with a surprising kind of vigour.
Always Here is a thoughtful and intimate listen with slick climactic song structures and wistful lyrical intent that is only complimented by its fall season release. I look forward to seeing what Good Rumour does next.