Review: The Winter Olympics - Profit & Loss [Album]

Review: The Winter Olympics - Profit & Loss [Album]

Freakscene Records // "A stroll through the indie-scene that was best left in the previous decade"

Review   1781 Views
Last Edited by: Chris MUG5 Maguire October 5th, 2012.

Similar in almost every way to the Kaiser Chiefs, Winter Olympics have decided to eschew the original for a painstaking recreation of everything that was wrong with the early noughties indie scene. Their lyrics are meaningless to the point of indecipherable, the sound is all straightforward drum beats and clean guitar chords, and the singer sounds like a carbon copy of Kaiser Chiefs lead singer Ricky Wilson.

In fairness the production values of the album are pretty high, especially considering that the album was recorded by the band in several locations.

The tracks are damn catchy at times, with 'Fags And Girls' teasing the listener with a hint of what could be if the band where to stick with this kind of throwaway indie-pop. They're often melodic too, with synths, pianos and other key-based instruments making an effective appearance. But that doesn't stop the songs from jarring in that typical indie fashion, with the syntax leaving songs feeling laboured and dull.

A perfect example would be 'I Miss the Nineties', an ode to the decade of poor fashion and even poorer music (yes I know, Prodigy, Faithless, Nirvana, etc; but there are of course exceptions). While technically it's a strong track, getting your toe-muscles twitching while bringing a range of instruments together under some excellent backing vocals, it's not long before the pop culture references wear thin and you find yourself reaching for the skip button.

WATCH // Winter Olympics - I Miss the Nineties

But the real issue behind Profit & Loss is the lyrics. Never before have I heard lyrics so vacuous, so devoid of purpose. When you hear lines like "All the bands you like are shit, they never even play their hits" and "I'm only here because there's free beer, and because you're beautiful". Have you ever heard such a nauseating sentiment? Any song in which you declare your desire for free alcohol and a girl simultaneously is inevitably going to seem callous.

The same applies to 'Feeling European', where Winter Olympics try to liken a girl to a holiday; "girl you know I love you like a holiday, I'm packing the essentials and I got my money changed". Wait, what? I kind of get the whole holiday, fleeting romance simile, but what does getting your money changed have to do with loving a girl? (unless of course they're referring to holidaying in Amsterdam). The whole allegory continues through the track but never really stands up to any scrutiny, which is in itself a good depiction of the album.

WATCH // Winter Olympics - Feeling European

So Profit & Loss is by no means a disaster, aurally it's a steady amble through the indie of the last decade, bringing to mind the sounds of The Fratellis or The Automatic. Unfortunately, those sounds are best left in that decade, and commercial success when travelling the post-millenium indie route is becoming less and less likely.

Profit & Loss is out now on Freakscene Records.

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