2015 came and went, we now enter 2016 with past music still ringing in our ears and with hopes of finding more great albums to devour, this new offering titled Leave Me Alone by Hinds comes as a welcoming start to the year. This Madrid based band started as a duo of Carlotta Cosials (vocals, guitar) and Ana García Perrote (vocals, guitar) in 2011, but after they released two tracks “Trippy Gum” and “Bamboo” in March 2014 they were later joined with Ade Martín (bass) and Amber Grimbergen (drums).
The opening song titled “Garden” commences with the rhythm section sounding Velvet Underground-esque, albeit the band have their own distinctive sound with their compelling garage pop sound and their authentic vocals prevailing at the choruses. “Fat Calmed Kiddos” intro begins with a small sounding drum being bashed, only to be continued with interplaying between lead guitarist and rhythm section while the other guitarist creates simple riffs in the background.
The band then produce an expeditious transition into the chorus that has a significant tempo change accompanied by lyrics expressing love and doubt about a lover. This album is rooted in garage rock and their chemistry is so apparent on this album, making you realise that this record is being made by four friends having fun and rocking out with this concept helped by the lo-fi production, this is epitomised by Hinds on the next track “Warts”.
“Easy” is a poignant song about growing up and reflecting on memories, between the 1.36 to 1.54 marks, the bass drum, bass guitar are predominant with accompaniment by electric guitars and subdued vocals, the whole musical passage sounding similar to The Vaccines. “Castigadas En El Granero” on the other hand, is the first song they ever recorded as a quartet, the guitar intro has the use of reverb effect while the remainder of the song has snappy guitar riffs and potent drumming, making this an excellent indie pop tune. “Solar Gap” is their only instrumental track on this album, with the band producing a mellow and serene ambiance.
“Chili Town” starts with two electric guitars interplaying then there’s a halt, and seconds later, drums and vocals break into the song, the space between the instrumentation is effective especially for the lead guitarist who generates riveting riffs. “Bamboo” was included as one of the songs for their debut EP titled Demo, and it makes the new album. The song starts with punchy base guitar intro with the rhythm section developing into the song.
The impact of the emotional harmonies coordinate with the lyrics being about failed relationship coming towards an end, albeit it is the type of song which could be easily misunderstood for a positive song just because of the sound. However one clear impression it does give, is that it is going to be one of their classic songs. “San Diego” starts with acoustic guitar and the upbeat tune is helped with the repetitive drumming, the sweet melody and infectious vocal delivery makes for a feel good song but their lyrical content is not always a one way street of pure bliss which we find on this song.
“And I Will Send Your Flowers Back” is cleverly placed as the next song after “San Diego” to insert the album with a slow paced ballad song that enriches the depth of the album. “I’ll Be Your Man” is the calm needed after the previous sorrowful song, with a stripped down approach particularly on the percussion instruments. “Walking Home” finds Hinds reverting back to their upbeat and joyous sound with complimentary lyrics, to end this irresistible and captivating Spanish garage rock album.
Overall I find this band to be very inspirational for the rock scene, they exemplify the idea that you do not need great production or to be an expert musician, you just need the right attitude and a level of originality to your music. If you have the January blues and you need something to pick you up, be sure to check this album out. Hinds’ Leave Me Alone album is out on January 8 via Mom+Pop, purchase it on iTunes here.
Words by Jack Walters