Despite being together for over half a decade and an immense amount of shows under their belts it has taken until now for Hypophora to finally release their debut album ‘Douse’. I am so happy to tell you that it is well worth the wait! With eleven tracks and clocking in at over fifty minutes the almost faultless songwriting and variety apparent make the album appear to be only half the duration for the listener.
The band are immensely talented, with years of playing together in various metal, prog and jazz ensembles they have an immensely tight yet versatile way of playing off each others ideas. Whilst Katie McConnell has the most phenomenal voice which perfectly moves between the raw emotions stirred by Skunk Anansie’s Skin to the more guttural chants of Deap Vally’s Lindsey Troy, an immense blend of tenderness and power.
The songs themselves are wonderfully crafted. Hypophora have found the beautiful sweet spot in songwriting which enables them to appeal to both casual listeners yet hold there own to a more critical ear. There is no wasted moment within a song, no padding, each is economical in its parts and grandiose in its delivery. Yet it’s not that they have just found a formula for a song, style or sound, each and every track on this album has its own story to tell and they do it with remarkable variety whilst retaining the consistent quality.
After a slow paced introduction a dirty grunge bass kicks off the pop-punk rumblings of opener ‘Behave’ whilst ‘Sorcerers’ flits between bouncy riffs and chord led sing-along moments. The album is instantly gratifying and memorable yet the variety apparent allows for repeat listens. It’s not all full force anthemic stomping pop inspired blasts of noise, there are tinges of lounge jazz in the middle eight of stomper ‘Headlines’, ‘Chemical X’ (my current personal fave has a drawn out grunge/doom riff which builds throughout its length reminiscent of the Dead Pirates ‘Uno’ and ‘Smiling (Numb)’ is beautifully sparse and emotive.
Hypophora have the potential to be huge, the right balance of styles to be able to appeal and play to the mainstream whilst here underground we give a knowing nod and smile knowing they are really one of ours! My advice to you all is get out and see them whilst you can afford to do so, the shows they play are only going to get bigger and better and I wish them all the best with it!