A rather new international project has risen around Latvian born and German raised Ewian Christensen (vocals, piano, sounds). On this album he teams up with German guitar player Benjamin Lachance, English electronic singer songwriter Fifi Rong and American post rock artist James Hrabak. Good Old Underground is the first full length effort for this collective.
The first name that popped into my head while I was listening to this was Coldplay. Mainly because of the melancholic nature of most of the songs, especially the singing. Ewian use (more) guitars (it is a wall of sound) and colour their material in a more alternative way with for instance piano distortion and electronics. Another reference would be some new wave rock from the eighties. But without being able to pinpoint that to a specific band. The album just radiates a certain grandeur I associate with that time.
And what brings all this? Easy, a very enjoyable album that has flair, identity and good songs with light and dark. The melancholy is never far away but only serves to suck you into the album. It is never dull or sad, but instead vibrant and very alive. The contrast between the singing and the arrangements really make it all shine. In short, I loved it! And with songs of around 3 to 4 minutes it is also suited for radio and more casual listeners.