Home > Album Reviews, Double Nichols on the Dime, Reviewed > Review: Tripwires – Spacehopper

Review: Tripwires – Spacehopper


by Caleb Nichols

I almost completely missed this under-the-radar release from this relatively unknown band from the UK. Admittedly, I was hesitant to listen to it partly due to its absolutely horrible album art, which for whatever reason completely offended my aesthetic sensibilities. “Garish” is the only word that seems to fit the terrible design.

It only gets worse as you open the sleeve and discover a lo-fi photo collage that feels more like visual vomit than design. Luckily, while I was silently cursing these poor graphic design choices I was also listening to standout track “Catherine, I Feel Sick,” perhaps the most effective cut of Tripwires’ first record for Frenchkiss, Spacehopper This title, IMHO, is another poor aesthetic choice.).

“Catherine…” and several other tracks on this generally pleasant listening experience, are evidence of the necessity of something the music industry mostly lacks these days: artist development. All across the record, we hear traces of potential greatness (sometimes very nearly realized); sort of like Radiohead’s Pablo Honey – which was an awful debut record from a band that would go on to completely define popular alternative music in the 21st century. This makes Spacehopper a potentially interesting document from a band that hasn’t figured it out yet, but sound as if they are on the verge of doing so.

For fans of The Bends-era Radiohead, Blur, Tame Impala

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