Reading’s SUNDARA KARMA have wasted no time before jumping in to release a debut album full to the brim of stadium appropriate, anthemic tracks, to cement themselves as this year’s indie band to watch.
Adding intelligence to the standard, guitar driven indie sounds that are permanently present throughout the music industry and take on the complex and universally relatable topic of ‘Youth’, throw in some religious and philosophical references and here we have an album that’s anyone could dance, sing, or just sit and contemplate life to.
Opener ‘A Young Understanding’ (below) demands attention immediately with some precisely driven hooks that will reverberate around your ears until ‘Olympia’ blows them away. Although we’re familiar with ‘Olympia’ and the sweltering vocals of frontman Oscar Lulu, hearing it in the context of the album gives it a whole new, energetic, life.
The album seems to have quite an anthemic theme to it, that is, until album breathers ‘Be Nobody’ and ‘The Night’ grace our ears. Both slow burning, yet each with it’s own unique highlight, they’re underrated gems of the full-length effort. ‘Be Nobody’ plays host to some religious referencing, whilst ‘The Night’ sees the Reading band take a more ethereal turn.
‘Happy Family’ also shows a different, less frenzied side to the band, placed smack back in between two massively driven tracks, it’s delicate percussion and melodies are perhaps the most interesting moment of the album.
The likes of ‘Loveblood’, ‘She Said’ and, of course, ‘Flame’ (above) are undeniable great accomplishments for a band only on their first album, adding funk, tension and a general urgency that can’t be rivalled currently by any of their other material.
All in all, an incredibly strong debut effort from the Sundara Karma and one that will most certainly take them to interesting heights throughout the remainder of this year.