Scottish indie/rock band We Were Promised Jetpacks skyrocketed to fame when they were promptly signed to Fat Cat Records back in 2008 and released their debut album These Four Walls the following year; they owe a portion of their success to licensing as many of their earlier tracks were used in television, examples include An Almighty Thud being used once for the hit series Sons Of Anarchy and It’s Thunder And It’s Lightning was used in one episode of One Tree Hill. Their EP The Last Place You’ll Look hit the shelves in 2010, and in 2011, the guys released their sophomore effort In the Pit of the Stomach much to music critics’ delight; and now the group return with their third studio album, and their first in three years, Unravelling.
Upon the news of the new album’s release, WWPJ unleashed the lead single Safety in Numbers; it is refreshingly not as upbeat as the bulk of first singles we hear from various other acts, it serves a subtle yet effective vocal with a vibrant warmth created by the atmospheric instrumentation. Lead singer Adam’s heavy Scottish accent breathes life into the light verses of Peaks and Troughs, the track’s dynamics are truly captivating as it transitions from a touch of sound to a consistent roar as it progresses; I Keep It Composed was written wonderfully, a favourite line would be “I keep it together, I’m keeping the ship and sinking the treasure”. Peace Sign continues the dominant rock vibe of the album, Night Terror‘s drum solo intro was haunting before the other instruments kicked in to give some life to it to deliver another solid rock track; ironically, Disconnecting does stray from the album’s overall sound and dons an earthy persona that gets you hooked again.
The edgy resonation from Bright Minds is quite addictive, it draws all your attention to each part given to each instrument, particularly the keyboard and the guitars; A Part of It is a rejuvenating number, the guitars have an uplifting punchiness that draws you in and the steady beat enables the track to cruise to great places. The most down key verses will be heard in Moral Compass, which sees the group return the the rock sound with a darker sounding approach; Peace of Mind is the longest track you’ll hear on Unravelling, and though it is an instrumental track it won’t stop you from enjoying its beauty. To wrap it up, Ricochet brings the album to a more down beat end, the vocal is muzzled to hold the sound of the track still to make it consistently atmospheric.
Unravelling is not a bad third effort from We Were Promised Jetpacks, so far they haven’t managed to disappoint too many critics or fans upon every release; this newbie is bound to be popular between both peer groups, and will hopefully spawn some new fans and listeners for the group. The rock sound of the album was consistent, though sometimes ever so slightly repetitive, but all was forgiven once stand out tracks like I Keep It Composed, Disconnected, Bright Minds and A Part of It took the album to places you weren’t expecting it to go. If you haven’t made yourselves familiar with We Were Promised Jetpacks before, you can start from Unravellingand work your way backwards for an experience you won’t regret.