Hands up who remembers Dublin based ’90s indie rockers Venus Envy? You do? Well all four original members are back making music together. This isn’t a reformation of Venus Envy, though, but a new band with all the same members, if that makes sense.
Hi Beats Lo came about when vocalist Eugene Ryder began recording and sharing his music with drummer Alan Murphy. Ryder is now based in Barcelona so this began the modern trend of working remotely and sharing. It gathered momentum and then they roped in the remaining original members of Venus Envy.
The resultant album, ‘Days You Get’, is a true collaboration, with members adding bits and other elements of songs getting removed. The album is a mish-mash of ideas, with fuzzed out guitar (Throwing Myself In and Is It Enough) sitting alongside more electronic based songs like Folly. The aforementioned Folly is a real standout tune. Its hushed vocals and minimalist tone create an atmosphere of intrigue. When the more languid songs are set alongside the more rowdy tunes, the album’s strength is in successfully creating differing moods.
There is a stripped-back feel to production throughout and vocal duties are split across the album, helping to keep proceedings fresh. Where it falls short is that some songs like I Don’t See You Enough, Corsair and Knock Knock could be labelled as filler, of which there is a bit too much. They don’t make your ears vomit but neither do they massage your ear lobes. You want songs to snag you back to listen to them more and more and that’s missing in part.
‘Days You Get’ is a reflection of its inception and recording process. It’s got some interesting and engaging moments, however the overall package feels disjointed. As a whole ‘Days You Get’ doesn’t truly connect but some individual highs are worth digging out.