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Monday, 24 September 2012

Frightened Rabbit - State Hospital EP

It's been a good while since I had the joys of doing a Frabbit post but finally, there's a new release to talk about. The State Hospital EP is their second EP since The Winter Of Mixed Drinks album (you can find a post about the first EP here), and serves as somewhat of an appetiser for their 4th album due early next year (I believe). I pre-ordered this from the band's store (unfortunately missing out on the print that Piccadilly Records offered with their pre-order a few weeks later) and it actually arrived on Friday, 3 days before its release. Excellent.

Another lovely cover from Frabbit. The knife pictured here actually had the EP title engraved onto it, and looks really effective. Also nice is the implement on the right hand side, a triple-barred version of the double-barred cross used in a lot of the artwork relating to TWOMD that the band had made specially for this artwork. What such an implement could be used for, however, is totally beyond me.

Black vinyl should come as no surprise. I long for the day that they do a coloured pressing, but I can stay happy as long as they keep releasing vinyl. The back cover is lovely. It looks as though the "FR EP II" has been embossed onto the drawer containing the spoon, and the piece of paper with all of the information is really nicely laid out. The record itself comes in a nice black inner sleeve, and features wonderful labels that reference the cover art (as seems to be done with all Frabbit vinyl releases, much to my delight). Also, there's a download code - hooray! I had some issues with my download, but Warner's customer services sorted it out very quickly for which I am hugely grateful.

Now since this EP only has 5 tracks on it, I feel it's only right to go through each in turn. We begin with the title track (and the only song from this EP that will be on the band's next album), State Hospital. It begins with an introduction reminiscent of The Wrestle from TWOMD, but builds to a lyrically delightful chorus and eventually a repeated cry of "all is not lost" which is just great. Boxing Night follows on, featuring one absolutely outstanding line (listen to it, you'll know it when you hear it) and quite a catchy little guitar melody. I can see myself growing to love this one a lot. After that, it's some quiet-loud dynamics for Home From War and the decidedly quiet Off. The former is great, the latter puts me off slightly with its backing vocals but is not bad by any means. The final track on the EP is Wedding Gloves. Clearly, the band enjoyed having Tracyanne Campbell and Archie Fisher guesting on the last EP as this time they've roped in none other than Aidan Moffat to sing on this track. Scott's vocals sound slightly feminine next to Moffat's low drawl, and the call-and-response style of the track early on is brilliant. Of course, I was always going to love this song - the combination of two vocalists I greatly enjoy could never not appeal to me. As usual with any Frabbit release, Scott has written his own track-by-track which you can find here, which is a far more informative piece on this EP than anything I might write. For what it's worth though, I quite like this EP. It's definitely got me excited for the band's next album, and I'm sure I'll end up hooked on this between now and when it is finally released. It had better not take too long.

1 comment:

  1. I don't usually care about album/ep art, but this is the nicest I've seen in ages.