Ball Park Music – Puddinghead


Album

Puddinghead

Label

Stop Start Music

Year

2014

Genre

For Fans Of

The Beatles - The Rubens - Bluejuice

Summary

Fantastic indie rock from some of Australia's finest.

Rating

98 / 100

There’s never a dull moment if you’re a Ball Park Music fan. The Australian indie/pop-rock quintet churn out new music quicker than the vast majority of bands all over the world at the moment. In fact, their third album, ‘Puddinghead,’ (a Shakespeare reference for those of you playing at home) is the third full-length that the band has released in three years, yet in all of that time they’ve managed to never sacrifice the quality of their music.

Lead single and opening track ‘She Only Loves Me When I’m There’ is a strong, synth-laden, effect-driven track with a catchy hook that echoes the song’s title, which makes you notice immediately why the band chose this song as the lead single from the album. The track instantly marks a type of progression in the bands style that manages to seem completely familiar while still venturing well out into the unknown.

Next Life Already’ shows a strong influence from rock legends The Beatles (which is also seen on other tracks like ‘Teenager Pie,’ ‘Polly Screw My Head Back On,’ and to a lesser extent, ‘Cocaine Lion’), and features some fantastic backing vocals from bassist Jennifer Boyce that add a whole new level to the song. That said, that comment can’t be limited solely to this song, given that the vast majority of the tracks on the CD have this advantage to it – This song is just a really fantastic example of it.

A Good Life Is The Best Revenge’ and ‘Trippin’ The Light Fantastic’ both have sections with a strong influence from late 70s disco music. The latter track, fittingly enough features lyrical content reflecting drug use (such as the glaringly obvious “all I want is for my friends and I to get high” in the middle 8), while also being the most catchy and danceable song on the record, and one that is bound to go down a treat in the band’s live set.

Struggle Street’ is a song with a somewhat bipolar quality that at times feels heavy and is pushed by a driving bassline throughout the verses, yet throughout the chorus and the seemingly random yet entirely appropriate tagline of “The lord always works in mysterious ways” feels light and somehow carefree, despite the contrasting lyrical content, and while it may challenge some listeners at first, anyone willing to give it a chance will eventually see the track as one of the album’s highlights.

In the writing and recording process of the album, the band put a lease on a three bedroom house in the Northern Suburbs of Brisbane, where they self-produced the record, which has yielded fantastic results. The level of production quality on ‘Puddinghead’ is astounding, and having the freedom to experiment creatively however they wish without the stress of having to work to anyone else has resulted in the band’s best release yet.

Conclusion

‘Puddinghead’ is a fantastic release that has seen Ball Park Music step outside of the box to produce some absolutely wonderful indie rock tracks. BPM are one of the strongest acts in Australian music at the moment, and ‘Puddinghead’ is by no small measure the strongest thing that they’ve released throughout their entire career so far.

Tracklisting

  1.  She Only Loves Me When I’m There
  2. Next Life Already
  3. A Good Life Is The Best Revenge
  4. Teenager Pie
  5. Trippin’ The Light Fantastic
  6. Cocaine Lion
  7. Everything Is Shit Except My Friendship With You
  8. Struggle Street
  9. Error Playin’
  10. Polly Screw My Head Back On
  11. Girls At High School

4 Responses to “Ball Park Music – Puddinghead”

  1. stuballs stuballs

    Pretty sure scores out of 100 should be dropped hey. Music’s interpretive, and the quantitative scores are getting pretty silly. I mean Architects new LP gets an 88, Issues pulls a KYS rating of 100 while this pulls a 98. Seriously, can they just go the way of the buffalo already?

  2. Matt.S

    By the statement of music being interpretive what’s the point if reviewing an album full stop. It would all just become aesthetic-lacking analysis.

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