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Blunda – Brighter Days Review

Indie pop for galvanising optimism.

What does Blunda sound like?

A traditionally lo-fi indie-pop artist that is bringing in the big guns for his new album.

The review of Blunda – Brighter Days

Blunda has spent the past couple of years looking at how his music could transport you to another place. A happier one. Somewhere free and hopeful. The indie-pop artist was inspired heavily by hikes with his son over the pandemic and this, in turn, transposed to his music. “Brighter Days” is an uplifting album full of anthems for the synth and indie-pop lover. It also marks a break out of the bedroom to something feeling fuller too.

photo of Blunda
Blunda

The album opens with a dramatic infomercial-styled piece full of big beats, power guitar notes and the feeling that you are scaling a mountain. It isn’t totally representative of the style of the album but it does present a maximalist approach to sound design. Synths are thick, guitars have weight, bass throbs and everything has a rhythmic pulse to it. It isn’t until the neon-soaked synthpop “Lost Without You” kicks in that Blunda’s smooth and clean vocals give you the cool breeze that calms the full-bodied heat of the instrumentation. Compared to lovely 2014’s “Messages“, this album is vastly more complex. Whilst previous Blunda releases have always had plenty of synths, there’s always been a purposeful lo-fi feel to them whereas this album feels and sounds bold and full-bodied. If this was still recorded at home, Blunda’s done an amazing job of giving a studio sound to everything.

The album also is a step towards a poppier and rockier side of Blunda’s world rather than pretty instrumentals. “Belong to Me” sounds like a lost Cure track, letting the sunny open guitar strums of the verses fall away to crunchier riffs of the chorus. The indie side hits best with the pacey and dynamic “Ever Since” that allows Blunda to cross over Muse and Fenech-Soler. The beats and synths evoke something very danceable but the guitars ground the music in a rockier place. Slower, dreamier rock tracks like “Bm” and “Light On” close out the album with a touch of shoegaze and blurred electronica. The smudged guitars, anthemic “ooh’s” and grease-smeared synth pads make some excellent lighter/mobile light swayers.

It’s great to see an artist that is happy to run the full gambit of what the genre of indie-pop can provide. If you want guitar hooks, it’s here. fancy some synth-driven melodies? Plenty of that too. With two instrumentals, you can even dabble in a bit of IDM-infused rock too. Blunda is clearly an artist who understands his craft and honed it well over the years. Whilst it’s a very crowded genre, it’d be a blunder not to give Blunda a chance.

Recommended track: Ever Since

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Blunda - Brighter Days

7.5

7.5/10

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