Norwegian duo Aleksander Kostopoulos (drums/percussion) and Petter Carlson (vocals/baritone guitar) have a rather surprisingly fat sound given that there are only two of them in Pil & Bue (that’s arrow & bow in Norwegian). A rat-a-tat-tat on the skins signals the commencement of opening track No Is The Answer – it’s certainly got the hallmarks of shoe-gaze and post-rock to it, though these influences may at first listen be hard to spot – they’re definitely there though. There are elements of the tune that are sweet; they leave me wanting more yet there’s plenty of less compelling stuff going on. Shakkakka is next – sweet drumming; again some strong elements but (remember I’m in a particularly shitty place right now) I’m yet to be struck by a cohesive whole.
Things are looking up with Fire. Prolonged feedback and a battery of percussion (played on the lip of the drum, if I’m not mistaken?) but it’s just not heavy enough. It is kind of dreamy though, and the influence of Placebo comes drifting in. It’s aching, longing – tempestuous, even – like waves crashing on rocks. The splendid little flourishes here and there are not enough to save it though. Am I being mean-spirited? Quite possibly…

Forget The Past is the band’s follow up to their 2014 debut Push Start Button but not having heard their first album, I’m not in a position to speculate on whether this release is better or worse. I’m not overly-enamoured so far.

Nevermind has a kind of groovy tempo, oddly reminding me of The Cure’s more up-beat work (though with less bass but a bit more grunt) while Fear Flee Freeze Flight just grates for the first two thirds of the track. It starts to get interesting but fails to truly take off. Final track Afterlife has more feedback and harmonics. The percussion is nice. It’s an interesting and alluring tune but like every song on here, it seems to wander off topic. It’s like anticipating a good meal only to be let down by the fact that your delicious dinner is actually a half-baked frozen meal. Harsh, I know, but if you dig shoe-gaze then you might find something appealing on here.

Forget the Past, Let’s Worry About the Future is out now on Name Music.