Subtle magic permeates the debut album from London-based foursome, One Eskimo. Their songs are filled with electronic elements, catchy hooks, lovely vocals and thoughtful yet heartbreaking lyrics that manage to avoid being totally melancholy. It’s the kind of album you know you like on first listen and continue to leave on repeat singing and swaying along a little more each time.
The band manages to keep a sound that has definite commercial appeal. It would not be surprising if you heard some of their songs in the background of your favorite primetime drama or in that saccharine sweet Zales commercial. The track “All Balloons” is an example with its bubbly sound featuring a chorus of children’s voices in the background and a hum-able kazoo-like melody. Keeping with the upbeat, tracks “Kandi” and “Simple Day” are bouncing ditties that sound as if they could have been the lost tracks from a Jason Mraz album.
However, the band doesn’t stay in happy commercial land throughout the whole album. The track “UFO” takes a decidedly darker turn and is a bit more haunting than many of the other songs. Also, “Giving Up” is more packed with soulful sadness. The change in tone gives a nice balance to “One Eskimo” as a whole.
While the album does have some diversity, the main criticism is that it till feels safe. The band sounds like they are coloring within the lines. Yet, can’t complain too much when the final outcome is a pretty damn beautiful picture.
Words: Lori Bartlett