Dublin band Come On Live Long’s debut album ‘Everything Fall’ mixes a soulful rock-based song-writing style with a crisp and engaging electronic production sound that at times pushes the material to incredible highs. A real innate and well communicated sense of commitment and belief in the music takes the album to a place where even its very few lows keep you always interested.
There’s a great sense of creativity on the album with many of the songs evolving thematically and experimenting with new directions. For the few rare occasions where a section of a song isn’t as good as the best of the album it only lasts for so long before we’re jolted in a new direction. There are lots of ideas here but they are never wasted or over-exploited. The songs sound like they were composed with the final production in mind, as opposed to the songs being written on guitar and later polished up and made presentable. Opening track Wasteland is a good example of this done well. It starts off with its opening theme and melody, but three minutes in gains this sizzling electronic bass that is a pure production flourish but feels totally necessary to the song as it develops.
Mountains follows Wasteland, and begins as a quieter piano-driven piece in which Louise Gaffney and Robert Ardiff share vocals. Typically of the album, it transforms into a big sound from which the piano completely vanishes. Little Ones has a similar trajectory but it is a completely different style of song, the most soulful on the album, and boasts some of the most remarkable production. Louise takes lead vocals until Robert breaks in, in a style reminiscent of the formal structure of any number of pop songs in which a rapper pops up with verse for diversity’s sake, perhaps an indication of the mix of influences from which this band draws.
Again with Cybil we’re treated to a change in sound. The simple percussions and humming synths work together somehow in this number that has the soul of an old work song in the vein of Black Betty, but at the same time fits into the overall tone of the album. The closer Billions is something else again. It has the calm laid-back sound of a campfire-lit beach party and is the song on the album that is most confident in, and faithful to, the tone it starts off in. It’ s the kind of song that feels like it could go on forever, the type that time should slow down for, like it needs to be danced to but only in slow-motion.
‘Everything Fall’ has many more surprises and the discovery of them is part of the fun of listening to the album. From every angle you approach it – performance-wise, formally, in terms of song-writing or production, musicianship – it simply impresses on every level. With a good sound-system this will be an album you’ll want to hear live.