Smile, The - Wall of Eyes

Regular price $ 33.99

On Blue Vinyl

With the release of their second full-length, the Smile are moving beyond being "just" a side project, establishing themselves as a force in their own right with Wall of Eyes. That being said, comparisons to Radiohead are unavoidable with Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood at the helm alongside drummer Tom Skinner. Viewing Wall of Eyes and its relationship to predecessor A Light for Attracting Attention, one might travel back to the turn-of-the-millennium sibling pair Kid A and Amnesiac: whereas their debut as a trio felt like a blockbuster declaration, this younger sibling takes a less immediate route, playing on mood and atmosphere that demands more focus from the listener. And like Amnesiac, the meandering, experimental feel of Wall of Eyes can be more spiritually nourishing than its elder, in a nebulous, can't-quite-put-your-finger-on-it kind of way. A beautiful haze is tempered by existential discomfort bubbling at the edges of "Teleharmonic," as the rhythm section kicks in amidst the clatter to reveal warmth in the chaos. Tension is cranked high on the lurching "Read the Room," a noisy racket sprinkled with dream dust; it's a snarling thrill that sounds unlike anything they've done. Likewise, the epic "Bending Hectic" is a sprawling eight-minute journey with evocative lyrics fit for the big screen and a crushing cacophony at the close that mirrors "Read the Room" as the heaviest cut on this side of the album. The guys get funky on the head-bobbing exploration of "Under Our Pillows," while lush strings provided by the London Contemporary Orchestra swell on the title track, "Friend of a Friend," and the sweeping "You Know Me!" Having proven themselves with Light, the Smile take more risks with this follow-up, resulting in a gorgeous, sometimes difficult trip into the unknown that, if only briefly, can make you forget about their main gig.

Wall Of Eyes
Teleharmonic
Read The Room
Under Our Pillows
Friend Of A Friend
I Quit
Bending Hectic
You Know Me!