STRFKR - Miracle Mile [Album]


What’s in a name? A rose by any other name would smell so sweet… it’s often overlooked just how much impact a name can have on who listens to your music. If you’re following the musical trend (of 2011-12) of a fashionable vowel dropping, all capitols, and radio hating, then you may find yourself flat on your arse before you’ve even taken the first steps. But maybe I’m just fickle like that, because unfortunately it does seem that you can judge the book by it’s proverbial cover, or name, in music these days (just take a wander around bandcamp if you don’t believe me).

Thankfully, most of the time you spend with STRFKR’s latest album ‘Miracle Mile’ will help you realise that this isn’t always the case. The guys have updated their sound for 2013 with some tight production, sugar-sweet songwriting and mellow high synth symphonies, which deliver on aural pleasure, but not so much on depth and excitement.

Whilst this is an album of iridescent indie-pop to keep yourself jolly on the morning commute to work, there’s a lack of depth that leaves you wanting a bit more from each track. It feels like they were written to be played in the background for a new hot hatchback advert and as such, serve as a perfectly adequate distraction to another activity. There are few moments where the music reaches out grabs you by your scruffy shirt and shakes you awake to get your attention.

‘Malmo’ comes close with a funky ol’ fashioned disco bass groove that grows into the makings of something Daft Punk would be proud to pen, but quickly loses all momentum and dissipates into a vacuum that sucks the groove out of you before quickly trying to reclaim it’s past glories. That’s not to say it isn’t a good track, it is, but it stops itself from being a great track.

There are moments, like on the Kurt Vile-ish ‘Fortune’s Fool’, that make you want to take long walks on a sunny Autumn day whilst listening to this album. But whilst the idea may seem beautiful, half way through you may find that it’s a rather vapid beauty that at times veers on to a path of self-caricature that MGMT and Empire Of The Sun found themselves victims of.

All in all, the album certainly has it’s highlights and I’d recommend most would give it a listen, but don’t be surprised if you don’t find yourself coming back to it very often. Unless you’ve set yourself up in the right context to hear it (i.e- a summer’s day on your way to meet your friends) you’re probably not going to notice you’re actually listening to it.

By Mikey Rush

The video for 'I'm Alive'.