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Golden Bloom - No Day Like Today EP (Review)

Golden Bloom, No Day Like Today

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 5 out of 5

WE’VE long been fans of Golden Bloom (aka Shawn Fogel), thanks to the album Fan The Flames and the EP March To The Drums.

Hitherto this point, however, he’s been doing it solo. Now, with the No Day Like Today EP, he’s welcomed a full band and the result is another indie-pop gem.

Combining sparkling pop with darker instrumental textures and lyrics that explore thornier emotions, this is a really great listen that deserves to have been fleshed out to a full album. As things stand, the EP offers five songs of pure brilliance.

Opening track Flying Mountain combines chiming guitars and glockenspiel beats with a cheery vocal that belies the uncertainty surrounding the lyrics (“I tried to call for help, then I found myself and sheltered from the storm” etc). But it also delivers a doozy of a chorus.

Deliver It For Me then slows down the tempo and comes over all thoughtful and bittersweet (“take this medicine when it gets harder to breathe…. how much of what we’re supposed to believe is based on the fable of Adam & Eve”), underlining the darker side of Fogel’s songwriting. But it’s a lovely listen thanks to the understated piano arrangement accompanying it. You could even liken it to classic REM balladry.

In contrast, Shadow of a Man picks up the tempo brilliantly, with a melody-strewn garage rock tune that even dares to toss in the odd thrash moment. It feels positively happy-go-lucky by comparison to some of the more quieter moments and should appeal to fans of bands like Eels, The Shins and Ben Kweller.

The sensitivity and hyper intelligence returns on the incredibly addictive White Whale, which combines thought-provoking, imagery-laden lyricism with instrumentals that flit effortlessly between dark and dreamy choruses and power-chord verses.

And Lone Reporter rounds things off in style with another upbeat, melody-laden classic that builds from a playful acoustic strum to a blistering fusion of guitars and percussion.

It’s a terrific way to sign off on what is a near-perfect EP.

Download picks: The whole darn EP

Track listing:

  1. Flying Mountain
  2. Deliver It For Me
  3. Shadow of a Man
  4. White Whale
  5. Lone Reporter