Team Picture – The Menace Of Mechanical Music (album)

Leeds-based alternative art rock outfit Team Picture have just released their new album ‘The Menace Of Mechanical Music’ and it’s is a thought through, inspirational compilation of new wave-influenced tracks. The album starts off with previously released single ‘Baby Rattlesnake’, which is a bright-sounding introverted song that builds from the start up. ‘Sleeptype Action’ is a grand follow up that sounds nearly theatrical and spins around the spot on and recognisable Team Picture-vocals. ‘Flower Pots, Electric Beds’ is the surprise that has gotten me hooked on this album, throughout the single vocals change from high pitched female into low pitched male and it’s a warming palette of sounds that is surprising and shows Team Picture’s songwriting-talents.

‘this is the’ lean on soothing harmonies while being a little too lengthy for my liking, ‘Handsome Machine’ is just a little less longer but with a spirit-lifting slightly lighter sound. Its vocals are a lot less high pitched and way more within the spectrum of what I can fully enjoy. Both ‘Compartment(s)’ and ‘(DIFFUSER)’ seem like a coded message telling me it’s time for a break. It’s the moment I sink back in my chair a little more, stare at the ceiling and let the sound of it roll over me. ‘The Menace Of Mechanical Music’ is a gasp of creativity and centres around the value of creative identity, the increasingly disposable nature of art and where that leaves its creators…

Team Picture have poured their emotion into the recording of the album and with this have disassociated themselves from the guitar-psych crowd with their earlier release of mini-album ‘Recital’. ‘Keep Left’ is another example of that, with a rather long intro and a nearly completely purely instrumental breather it is another unexpected yet pleasant Team Picture-surprise. ‘(PARTY)’ is half a minute of something that resembles the Mario Kart-soundtrack, let’s say I was glad to hear it only took half a minute before its ending.

‘Slowest Hype’ and ‘Quit Reading’ are possibly the two singles that are furthest away from each other when it comes to sound and genre, start off with a mellow and nearly boring track but end an album with a fast paced punk track that is least experimental of all twelve songs. Guitarist Josh Lewis says about the recording process of their debut album: “It was an anxious process but an enjoyable one. Indeed, beyond the increasingly golden gated idea of ‘making it’ as an artist, this new album is simply about surviving as one.”



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