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Album Review: Weird Prayer by Sweet John Bloom

Post-punks Sweet John Bloom release their debut album Weird Prayer worldwide on the 9th of June. Post-punk doesn’t come anymore infectious than this. Although it consists of 15 tracks it comes in just shy of 35 minutes. Each track is a short and snappy blend of American indie and hook laden post-punk.

Featuring former members of Daniel Striped Tiger, Four Eyes and Lost Twin, Sweet John Bloom first took form in the Spring of 2013. The band recorded their debut EP as a trio shortly after but later expanded to a four piece before recording their debut full-length, Weird Prayer. Recorded with Justin Pizzoferrato (Dinosaur Jr, Speedy Ortiz, California X) and Seth Manchester (Battles, Fang Island, The Body) during the Summer and Fall of 2014, Weird Prayer dabbles in power-pop and indie, yet keeps a punk energy that gives it all an extra kick.

Sweet John Bloom are like the guy that comes to a house party, chugs a litre of vodka, makes everybody laugh, bokes everywhere and leaves all in the space of half an hour. It’s a thrilling ride while it lasts and you’re left kind of dumfounded by what you’ve heard. The musicianship on display is excellent, the band have the knack for writing a catchy song honed to the T. Yet there’s something indistinct about each track that allows them to blend together and wash over you. As a result, although the album flows wonderfully it’s incredibly difficult to pick out any particular songs.

Hell that’s part of the magic really, just leave your penchant for standout tracks at the door. Listen to the album as a whole, sit back enjoy. Opener ‘Shapeshifter’ is a menacing and raucous statement of intent and your ears prick up for the brilliant groove of ‘Blue Moon’ before the rest morph into a heaving ball of gritty guitars and infectious hooks. Album closer ‘Aging In Place’ signs the album off with aplomb with 60s style punk guitars.

Weird Prayer is a solid debut album, what’s apparent is the underlying talent within Sweet John Bloom, if the band build upon this and develop some standout tracks then they’ll definitely be ones to watch.

AD Rating 6.5/10

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