Peggy Sue – 'Choir of Echoes' album review

On an album about voices, the folk-pop trio ditch twee and find a sound that's distinctly their own

0

Comments

Add +

Time Out Ratings :

<strong>Rating: </strong>4/5


Peggy Sue have a thing about voices. The Brighton trio describe their fourth LP, ‘Choir of Echoes’, as ‘an album about singing. About losing your voice and finding it again. Voices keeping each other company and voices competing for space… Choruses. Duets. Whispers and shouts.’ As wistful and airy-fairy as this all sounds, it makes a spot-on kind of sense as the 13 songs on ‘Choir of Echoes’ unfold.

Peggy Sue’s two vocalists, Rosa Slade and Katy Young, have always made their impeccable harmonies central to the band’s identity. Since the group’s early days, when they were called Peggy Sue And The Pirates and supported Mumford & Sons, Slade and Young have displayed a deft ability to marry their voices in a unique way that allows each to shine and both to blend. What they have chosen to sacrifice along the way are any of the lingering hints of twee that came with their old seafaring suffix.

Often losing out in comparisons to label-mates First Aid Kit, Peggy Sue have come closest to carving out their own niche on this fourth attempt, by adding some sour to the sweet. The folkiest number on ‘Choir of Echoes’, ‘How Heavy the Quiet Between Your Mouth and Mine’, offers up sweet vocals that bely the dark place where the lyrics go: ‘We filled it with words in the hope that we could drown it out / But it was too loud.’. The group’s stint touring with Jack White can be heard in the blues-influenced first single, ‘Idle’, with its mantra-like opening – ‘Let the devil make work for my idle hands’ – which wouldn’t sound out of place bellowed by a gospel choir.

Elsewhere on the album, both the sound and sentiment are deliciously dark and distinct. ‘Longest Day of the Year Blues’ revels in misery, filled with wonderfully forlorn ‘oooh’s and ‘aaah’s, and on closing track ‘The Error Of Your Ways’, rumbling drums rugby-tackle the singers’ dulcet tones. An album obsessed with voices may prove to be the turning point where Peggy Sue found their very own.


Buy this album here

What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments box below or tweet us at @TimeOutMusic.

Listen to Peggy Sue on Spotify


Watch the video for 'Idle'

Users say

0 comments

Read more music features

Wilderness festival

See Björk, George Clinton and Ben Howard at the magical festival just an hour outside London

Five things you didn't know about George Clinton

The godfather of funk discusses tailoring, asparagus and ‘tripping my ass off’

Who to see at Visions Festival 2015

After two sell-out years, Visions Festival returns to Hackney this weekend. Here are our highlights

Why I love Arthur Russell

Singer-songwriter Joseph Coward pays tribute to the pioneering composer from Iowa

Witness the fitness

Time Out gets sweaty at the London fitness classes where the soundtrack matters as much as the workout

See all Time Out music features