Previously covered band Oddnumbers has shared their debut album No Place Like Home, an alternative rock album Damon Albarn reminiscent in its balance of floweriness and moodiness. No Place Like Home belongs perfectly in alternative's current movement back towards digital and analog marriage.
Oddnumbers embraces the indulgent autotune of hyper pop while making space for post-grunge power chord strums , carving out a patient body of work that dedicates ample time for the instrumentals to breathe. These are often some of the most satisfying moments on the project like the last bit of "Teeth" where saturated synths howl the track to its conclusion. Much like the pop, and post-punk growing pains of the early 2000s, No Place Like Home is comfortable hanging outside of genre classification and carries a few tricks in its 35 minute bag.
Tracks like "Glitter" emulate the sonic footprint of brit-bands like Arctic Monkeys and Oasis donning a steady groove of bassline and dirty guitar, while bringing the autotune into an unfamiliar space as the main means of communication.
The first half isn't aggressively up-tempo but packs some valuable sing-alongs like on "Boombox", the last single released in anticipation of this project. The track calls back to the infamous 80s trope of standing outside of your love's window with a boombox, with a beautiful chorus that warrants you sing along with it.
Second half jump-starter Chicago is a luxurious cool-down track that merges post-grunge balladism and nu-wave synth work, quite akin to something you may have heard Damon Albarn conjure up in the early days of his Gorillaz side-project.
The next track, "Let Go" is a clean guitar heartbeat, that grows more flowery and jam-based as the song stays on longer, dedicating space for rhodes keys, synths and a vulnerable breakdown just past the tracks 3 minute mark that transitions into yet another awesome instrumental close-out.
"Rearview" treks into a more pop inspired 4 chord progression, reflecting on "so many things...lost and wasted away" that incorporates Sgt Peppers style horn-use and other pretty instruments to march out to the last leg of the album--a last leg that still has one more funky jam left in "Take It Or Leave It" before its final fist bump with "Disturbia"
Where the album greatly performs in instrumental composition and character, the album also missteps a bit with vocal over-processing in the consistent autotune throughout. On tracks like "Boombox" and "No Gas" the autotune absolutely delivers and adds performance and character to amazing melody decisions. However on tracks like "Let Go" and "Glitter" the autotune is often stagnant and out of key during the most narratively important segments of the songs in the verses. These frequent blemishes hurt valuable songs, making extended periods of vocals incoherent throughout the album and perhaps reveal an area of focus for future releases. But by no means does the autotune spoil the awesome pallete this album has to offer.
Overall, we really enjoyed No Place Like Home and its genre amalgamation and would totally recommend you give it a dedicated listen. Despite, some ambiguity in terms of lyrical coherence, we think No Place Like Home still has something to say in the indulgent instrumental decisions made and the incredibly pretty segments where the vocals are simple but spot-on. We're giving No Place Like Home a 7.5/10.
Check out No Place Like Home below