Rapidly changing time signatures and keys bump and collide colourfully with each other as the ‘Lost Infantry’ magic bus runs off the psychedelic skid pan. Tearing apart the rule book and cocking a snook at the ‘in crowd’ this seriously talented quartet climbs the rigging and sails away from a mundane land and into a happy frantic world entirely of their own making.
The music sounds like early ‘Cure’ struck violently upon the head by ‘Porcupine Tree.’ Buzzingly adroit flourishes of keyboard wizardry courtesy of Matt to swirling jazzline guitars from Thom, and then busty rhythms from Tom on bass and Parkin on drums -the overall effect is generously full of melodramatic, soulful song – and they even choose to sing Acappella at times.
The song-book includes such pieces as the drum-song ‘Parkin’ that has a genuine ska-sound with softly lipped vocals, shining highlights and a groovy beat. The song has a delicate texture but scoops of full-on soul. Or take the high larkin’ song ‘The Arsonist’ that drips with silvery notes and edgy chords. The tricky percussion adds depth and jagged angles to the poetry of those flamboyant keyboards from Matt.
All-time favourite, though, is ‘The Spectacle of the Scaffold’. This number sputters along like a clockwork beetle. The tune feels like it is edging itself ever closer towards calamity. You need nerves of steel to listen to it. From the tenderest vocals that cry from the heart, to those intricate bass-notes and cascades of keys that triumphantly collapse onto
themselves like the Walls of Jericho. This amazing number finally tumbles into the kind of chorus you never dreamt was possible. Shining, haunting, sentimental and, naturally, without regrets.
A kaleidoscope of squelchy blips and woo-woo sirens are accompanied by commendable piano flourishes . Nostalgic nuances and angst-ridden vocals mark this band out as a melodramatic tour-de-force to be reckoned with. Avant-garde and jazzy enough even to appeal to grandykins, though geekily progressive at other times, ‘Our Lost Infantry’ are always as solid and satisfyingly real as ever it gets. Ones to watch for 2011.