Brainfreeze is the first full-length offering from Manchester indie-rock outfit, False Advertising. The clever switching of vocalists and grunge-infused guitar tones prove that the three-piece know how to play to their strengths – and how to show them off.
Instantly commanding attention, ‘Influenza’ opens the record. Finding a perfect balance between grunge and pop sometimes goes a bit wrong, yet here it’s been executed brilliantly. Vocalist/guitarist/drummer Jen Hingley’s delivers lyrics with a clarity that will draw you in. ‘Influenza’ feels both strangely new and gently familiar, a combination that works surprisingly well as an album opener.
‘You Said’ offers a subtle tone change and lyrics that will get under your skin with their honesty. It morphs from something subdued and gentle to a loud, explosive indie song with some great bass riffs. From here, the LP moves to ‘Uncomfortable’, another honest and upbeat tune. Hingley wrote it about people who are unfair to you with no real reason. This theme is sure to strike a chord with many, and it immediately has us interested. The guitars are steeped in grunge and brings to mind the sound of early Marmozets. False Advertising are a band made from experimentation, as ‘You Weren’t in My Dream’ shows. It’s a theatrical little ditty offering an entirely new vibe. ‘Personal Gain’ does much the same but is the polar opposite of ‘You Weren’t in My Dream’.
Written and sung by drummer/guitarist/vocalist Chris Warr, the main theme of ‘Personal Gain’ is elitism. The dirtier guitar tone and politically infused lyrics make this track a little hard to get your head around, but once you do, you’ll see that it offers an intelligent commentary on today’s political climate. Warr’s vocal compliments Hingley’s as both sound like they’re having fun singing together.
The pace of Brainfreeze changes slightly with ‘At the Top’. While it still offers False Advertising’s colossal guitars, the tempo is slower. The twists and turns in this track kept us on our toes, as do the changes of vocalist here. ‘So Long’ is different yet again, closing the record with stunning digitalised elements. Hingley sings with an honesty so heart-breaking, it feels as though we’re intruding. Occasionally, the multiple layers of vocals and instruments can be hard to follow, but ‘So Long’ holds an enchanting power over us – we can’t help but fall in love with it.
While this record is released with on a label, False Advertising’s DIY ethos prevails. From the album artwork they shot themselves to the stunning strings played by friends and family, the band’s true selves are represented here. The intelligent ideas and varying dynamics make this an incredibly strong debut from a band that have poured pure passion into their work.
Brainfreeze Is Released Friday 8th November Via Alcopop Records