By Mark Glenister
March 2020, London four-piece Crows had tracked their 2nd Album, the much anticipated follow up to 2019’s Silver Tongues. They had raised funds to appear at the prestigious SXSW Festival in Austin, and played a sweaty, raucous, triumphant gig at Peckham Audio.
And then the world stopped, everything closed down, including the music industry. And Crows and their loyal fans wondered if they would ever release or hear the 2nd album, let alone ever see them live again.
Now just over 2 years later, Crows finally get to release their long awaited 2nd album – Beware Believers, and it does not disappoint throughout its 11 tracks. It doesn’t let go either, from the opening chords of the first track ‘Closer Still’ to the final bars of the last track ‘Sad Lad’ this album grabs you by the scruff of the neck and throws you in to a live Crows gig, straight into the mosh-pit, with lead singer James Cox standing in front you, screaming his lungs out.
Whilst the first album had moments which felt like their live experience, this album sounds like a Crows gig from start to sweat drenched finish. This is the sound of band feeling comfortable with their sound, and a rhythm section that will pummel you senseless. It needs to be noted that these are the first tracks written with drummer Sam Lister being involved, and you can hear his and Jith Amara’s (bass)influence all the way, add to that the layered searing sounds and feedback from Steve Goddard (lead) and the dark, passionate, angry lyrics of James Cox, you have a very dark but beautiful album. It delivers on every track, hardly pausing for breath until the last few songs, the band wanted this experience for you and they do not disappoint.
No subject is left uncovered, from the disbelief of Brexit to mental health, from the incompetence of the DWP, to the stresses of working and living in London, from American serial killers to a tribute to the late great Daniel Johnston. This album demands your attention, especially with standout tracks like bass driven ‘Slowly Separate’ , the heartbreaking ‘Healing’ with its ‘I feel so lost without you, I feel so good without you’ lament and the pounding ‘The Servant’, these tracks have already become fan favourites and its going to be interesting to see their set list when their UK Tour starts on Tuesday 5th April in Bristol as they have an abundance of astounding live tracks to choose from now.
The wait for this album has been worthwhile, and now the band are working with both Fuzz Club and Bad Vibrations, you can see that they have a team behind them who will push and lead them in the right directions.
Perhaps the album should have been titled ‘Disbelievers Beware’ you would certainly not bet against this band following the footsteps of old tour buddies IDLES and gaining a far bigger audience than they have now.
Information and tickets for the tour can be found at crowsband.co.uk.