Oct 6, 2021
Pond — 9 — Album Review
Psychedelic Rock | Electronic | Indie
With the end of what was a very generous month in terms of music (that being the September of 2021), we now arrive at a somewhat more scarce beginning to the brand new month of October. It was another one of those weeks where I would turn to Album of the Year’s “New Releases” page as my primary source to discover something new.
I initially had another album lined up for a review this week. However, due to some unusual circumstances surrounding said album’s release, I am potentially going to write a different kind of article on that, so keep your eyes peeled.
Nevertheless, I was lucky enough to discover the Australian psych-rock band Pond, and their brand new album 9, as a backup for one of my traditional album reviews.
As the name suggests, 9 is the ninth studio album from Pond, a band who have been around since they formed in 2008 in Perth. However, this project serves as the very first instance of myself discovering the group.
It seemed from the get-go, that Pond seemed to hail from an indie vein. And as a Brightonian, I come from an unfortunate position of privilege when it comes to my exposure to the indie scene. that being said, I initially ventured into 9 with a somewhat weary mindset. But as I ventured further into the album, I was pleased to discover that there was more to 9, and thus Pond as a band, that initially met the eye.
Somehow, someway, Pond seemed to pull a lot of inspiration from bands that could be considered part of the same vein, that I really like. Bands like Sundara Karma, and Gengahr, come to mind. Furthermore, Pond manage to bring those elements together in a somewhat concise manner under one project, while giving each track enough space to stand alone as a unique listen amongst the rest.
It’s not so much that there’s a versatile range of moods, but rather, a different range of musicalities. The majority of the album stays true to one core aesthetic of accessible whimsicality, which succeeded in giving 9 the vibrance and atmosphere it needed to have my attention.
There are, however, a few tracks that seem to break this rule. And as a result, they wound up being the least memorable moments that 9 had to offer. To be more specific, it was tracks like “Czech Locomotive” and “Gold Cup / Plastic Sole” that displayed the more typical indie tropes I was building myself up to be so weary towards before the initial listen. I would say that there is certainly a glimmer of uniqueness that Pond present, but it is not nearly as obvious through tracks like these.
On the flip-side, tracks like “Pink Lunettes”, “Rambo”, and “Toast” are three examples of tracks that are very different to each-other, but still work under the same album somehow.
In conclusion, 9 is a very solid listen, and I can definitely see the album growing on me even more in the near future. I reckon that by the end of the year, it may even have the potential to end up on my top 50. But only time will tell, so stay tuned.
Favourite Tracks: Pink Lunettes | Rambo | Toast
Least Favourite Track: Czech Locomotive
Spinning Top Records
Enjoyment: 7/10 | Memorability: 7/10 | Atmosphere: 8/10
Uniqueness: 7/10 | Satisfaction: 8/10 | Narrative: 7/10