Travelog – Rezo (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

If I scan across the blurb for an album and see such luminaries as Sparklehorse and Mercury Rev listed as reference points, how can I not dive right in? Surely anyone who lists such mercurial and marvellous bands as sonic touchstones is going to produce something similarly interesting? There’s only one way to find out.

Having met as members of the Irish indie band The Mitcheners, Rory McDaid and Colm O’Connell, as Rezo, recorded their debut album remotely between their homes in Spain and Ireland throughout 2020’s lockdowns and restrictions. A familiar story.

And long-distance collaboration seems to suit them as Travelog is a bit of a cracker. (In fact, Cracker’s more considered moments also makes for a very good reference point, you could easily slip in their excellent Euro-Trash Girl and it would seem right at home, but I digress.)

With a reference to the US influences given in the choice of spelling in the title, this is an album full of alternative vibes and alt-country grooves. Sing is a wonderfully hazy psych-scape reminiscent of the aforementioned Rev’s, Girl From Margate is a throbbing, raw-edged and glitchy tribute to Tracey Emin (unexpected) and Another Shot is a gentle, bass-heavy stomp off the beaten tracks.

It errs on the side of the mid-paced and the gentle, the odd and the beguiling, but that is exactly how I describe myself on my CV, so it is hardly surprising that I love what they are doing here so much…

…or that I can’t find a proper job!

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