Four Skinny Indie Kids

Satelite Stories

Pine Trails

XYZ Musix

1st November 2013

Pine Trails

A band from Finland comprising Esa Mankinen (vocals/guitar), Marko Heikkinen (lead guitar), Jyri Pesonen (Bass/vocals) and Olli-Pekka Ervasti (drums) – who have generated a reputation for creating powerful indie pop. 2012 saw the band release their debut album ‘Phrases to Break the Ice’ before touring extensively through Europe. This second album was put together by the band in various locations from January of this year. It is described as “10 stories of growing up, love lost and near misses.”

Very much in the camp of the likes of  Two Door Cinema Club and Tokyo Police Club the band deliver effortless high tempo energetic and cinematic indie pop. Mankinen has a unique vocal style – sometimes he adopts an almost Devonshire lilt – which sets the band aside from the usual run of the mill indie bands. The songs are well crafted and the production is clean and crisp.  All of the recognisable tropes of indie pop are hear – soaring vocals, high register sustained/phased/flanged guitars and busy drumming. Of particular note is Pesonen’s bass which gets quite funky at times and is remarkably good in parts.

Of some interest is the degree of conceptual continuity throughout the songs with some words/phrases repeating/echoing across the tunes. There is also a degree of blurring between an “european sound” – imagine a poppier version of Sigur Ros – and say the pop punk of the Americas.

The old lags of the music world will dismiss this as 15 minute frippery – to some degree that might be aposite – however there is enough guile and thought in these tunes to warrant a listen, even from the most jaded lotus eater.

The band will be touring in 2014 they play Soup Kitchen on 13th February – the album is available from I Tunes.

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