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Guild League - Speak Up

  by Benjamin Howarth

published: 2 / 3 / 2009

Guild League - Speak Up
Label: Matinee Recordings
Format: CD


Upbeat third album from the Guild League, the side project of Tali White, the drummer with Australian indie pop trio the Lucksmiths

Not content with lending his vocal and drum skills to last year’s career high ‘First Frost’ from his full time band, Australian indie-pop legends the Lucksmiths, Tali White now returns with a third album from his side project, the Guild League. There is certainly nothing here to put-off fans of his more established mainline, but the Guild League are more upbeat and (dare I say it) more naturally tuneful. With recent Lucksmiths albums having adopted a downbeat approach, fans of their more sprightly work will delight in the effortless pop of songs like ‘If Not Now..’. But just as was the case on the band’s outstanding debut ‘Private Transport’, an album that has made regular returns to my stereo in the years since I first bought as a first year undergraduate, over time it is the ballads that really stand out. The combination of White’s observational lyrics, excellent melodies and gorgeous arrangements make for some fantastic pop music. When White roped his friends together to help him make his debut, the range of players gave the album a welcome variety, and while some of that album’s clumsy grace has been lost, the development of the Guild League into a genuine band allow these songs to be presented with increased confidence. Of particular note are the saxophone solos, which never fail to add texture and class to the proceedings. Tali White remains a cheerfully wry songwriter, and (once again) has used the Guild League to show that he is easily the equal of his Lucksmiths colleagues as a songwriter. Add this to your shopping lists.

Track Listing:-
1 Mouse Vs. Mountain
2 If Not Now...
3 Dead Hour
4 Suit Fits
5 The Idea
6 Where's the Colour
7 Brains
8 Limited Express
9 17 Summer
10 Incandescent

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Inner North (2005)
Convincing indiepop on second album from the Guild League, the side project of the Lucksmiths' Tali White

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