2-54

With a name that pinpoints the exact moment in a Melvins track that defines their aesthetic, 2:54 have been nothing if not headstrong and focussed since their inception. Their second album, ‘The Other I’, carries an equally revealing title referring as it does to the Thurlow sisters’ near telepathic connection via a line from poet Percy Shelley.

From the stomping rhythm and desperately yearning vocals on opener ‘Orion’ through to the driving dark wave of ‘Raptor’, this is indie music with grand pretensions. A literary influence runs throughout, too, with ‘Tender Shoots’ based on a self-penned short story.

The best tracks, ‘Sleepwalker’ and ‘Monaco’, simultaneously strike a rare balance between anthemic and understated, rooted in the grunge of Nine Inch Nails and A Perfect Circle but delivered via the dreamier tones of Warpaint. Elsewhere, though, they fail to live up to their lofty, faintly revolutionary aspirations and deliver tracks like ‘Crest’ and ‘South’; polished but lacking energy and ultimately, one feels, a bit too palatable.

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