The Sugarrush - ‘High Status’ (album)
There’s been a rush of new albums being released in the last few weeks, and one of those we haven’t yet mentioned is the new album 'High Status' from Finnish indie pop band The Sugarrush.
Time prevents a detailed track by track review, but I wanted to cover this partly because it was brought to my attention by the ‘master statesman’ of music blogs, One Chord to Another, who somewhat improbably has been writing about Finnish (and world) music online since before the internet even existed. But rather nicely it was his appreciation of The Sugarrush that partly led him to set up OCTA all those years ago, similarly to us setting up NMR because we wanted to write about Major Parkinson, Moddi and Biggi Hilmars. Oh and to fund the purchase of a 50 foot private yacht, obviously,
All of that should also give an indication of how long The Sugarrush have been going. They first released an album back in 1999 (Blackie’s Wig), followed by a follow up 2 years later (Mirrorball Ballerinas). Since then I think they’ve been pretty quiet from an album perspective, but there’s been a couple of EPs and some live performances. As for that new album, well it was actually written and recorded (and even mixed) 10 years ago, which proves that if you start something, then the least that the creative endeavour deserves is to complete it, no matter how long it takes – the exception, of course, being that Of Monsters Of Men album review I started but never finished a couple of years back. Please don’t make me listen to that again.
Anyway The Sugarrush are well named, because their music has a euphoric indie pop feel, high tempo 3 minute tracks with bright melodies - I guess it should appeal to fans of bands such as Teenage Fanclub. There isn’t much darkness or melancholy to be found, and I guess if you’re looking for something with real depth they might not be for you, but it’s an album that’s really easy to get into. Highlights include album opener ‘Yeah’, which builds to a great ending when vocals and guitars are in full power pop mode, whilst ‘Just Do It’ is delivered at ‘break neck’ speed.
‘One in a Million’ is my favourite of those style of tracks, for me because there is also a hint of Idlewild in a few places, and the contrasts between the subtle and frenetic sections works really effectively. I like the guitar sound in ‘Seems So Easy’, whilst concluding track ‘The Cure’ probably appeals most, maybe because it does have a slightly darker tone to the vocals and guitars.
Given this has taken so many years to release I have no idea what future plans these guys have, but clearly there’s a lot of Finnish indie fans in particular who will be happy to see ‘new’ Sugarrush material, and their music should find favour with indie pop fans all over. Who knows, maybe in 10 years they’ll return with another album of music and I can listen on that new yacht.