Released on Topshelf Records, August 5th
Field Mouse are far less timid than their name may suggest. New album Episodic sees the American band (Rachel Browne – vocals/guitar, Andrew Futral – guitar, Saysha Heinzman – bass, Tim McCoy – drums, Zoë Browne – synth/rhodes/vocals) up tempo and angst, with riffs that pound and vocals yearning with both pleasure and pain. The album is packed with guests, Sadie Dupuis (Speedy Ortiz) sings on Do You Believe Me?, Allison Crutchfield (Swearin’/Waxahatchee) lend her vocals to Out Of Context, on which Joseph D’Agostino (Cymbals Eat Guitars) also plays guitar and sings.
The grungey influences of each of these musicians is evident, with things shifting away from the shoegaze vibes of debut Hold Still Life to something more frantic and potent. Accessory is gloriously spikey, whilst Beacons is a more melodic and epic centrepiece. Some how Half Life managed to be both fast and with a gentle lilt, and title track Episodic is super bouyant, with a melody line more than inspired by Los Campesinos’ You, Me, Dancing!
The album ends with the thrashing crescendo of repeated refrain ‘it hurts’ on Out Of Context. For the listener, it’s been something of a delight.