So this was me about a week ago:
“I’ve had Unicycle Loves You’s new one, Failure, on my desk for at least a week now. One of the reasons it’s taken me awhile to spit out a review — I haven’t yet, still — is because I’m finding they’re harder than the average band to categorize and, well, put in a box. The needed idea that condenses what they’re doing on Failure into something practical is pending.”
Amazingly, little has changed in my opinion of Unicycle Loves You. And yet, damn it, it’s been two weeks to the day since Failure was delivered to my inbox. Time for me to divulge some impressions.
May that be read as high praise, Unicycle Loves You. I never ever ever take this long.
Now, I’ve about convinced myself that however pedestrian the band might seem, there’s an ingenuity to their uniqueness that hasn’t completely slipped by me. Their drum kit, guitar and bass — a sprinkling of keys, too, but mostly those three only — have captured my attention in a way those same instruments together largely haven’t before.
I mean, Unicycle Loves You is noisy. Much of their stuff on Failure is moments of severe blasts of clatter followed by rhythmic calm. And back and around again. It gets screechy at times with all that electric guitar pinching your ears, but it’s short-lived in a relative way since the average Failure track is three minutes or less.
That might be what most separates Failure from the group’s last full length, Mirror, Mirror. I’ve listened to that one only a little, but enough to know that Failure doesn’t seem so carefully intricate. “Quagga,” a quick go-to of mine, probably wouldn’t have a place on Failure. It isn’t impulsive enough.
- The Chicago-based Unicycle Loves You is Jim Carroll (vocals/guitar/keys), Nicole Vitale (vocals/bass) and J.T. Baker/John Rungger (drums).
- Failure is available in a variety of formats from $8-$12.99 | Bandcamp
- I saw them play an Empty Bottle show not long ago. | Review | Video
- Upcoming shows: February 25 at Saki Records | Free; March 10 at The Hideout | Tickets
Enjoy this review? Check out other Music Reviews on Chicago Tunes!
Hey! Like Chicago Tunes on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.
Stream all the music you’ve heard here in one convenient place on Hype Machine.