Having steadily gained attention while blitzing the summer festival circuit last year and occupying some standout opening slots for The Kaiser Chiefs and The Kooks it is quite obvious to see that Camden four-piece Tribes are boasting quite a lot of potential. The recent release their debut album Baby saw them wholeheartedly realise it.
There’s something of a nineties Britpop feel to Tribes and that’s absolutely no criticism; they have a strong, guitar-based indie flag to fly with a troop of melodic tunes that while on the surface may seem easy to sneer at, frankly just hit the spot. The album reeks of Suede, Oasis and Blur; everything that was good about nineties Britpop.
Tracks such as the single Sapph0 showcases the lyrical depth found throughout the album, with intimate whispering vocals which smoulder and build to a classic sing-along chorus which boasts the influence of The Pixies. We Were Children gives a clear indication of the era that influenced Tribes with singer Johnny Lloyd spinning out lyrics such as “we were children in the mid-nineties” while the rest of the group – made up of Dan White, Miguel Demelo and Jim Cratchley – flit between bombast and intimacy.
Throughout Baby Lloyd reveals himself as a talented wordsmith. Despite the majority of songs tackling the minor issue of death it blends a dark edge with pop tunes, reminiscent of the noir witticisms of messrs Morrissey and Curtis.
In this so-called drought of decent guitar bands, four indie lads from Camden may not sound too promising. Ignore the naysayers, they’re talking rubbish: Tribes are genuine contenders.
Baby is out now.