Sundara Karma – Youth Is Only Ever Fun In Retrospect (2017) [Qobuz FLAC 24bit/48kHz]

Sundara Karma – Youth Is Only Ever Fun In Retrospect (2017) 
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/48 kHz | Time – 47:37 minutes | 589 MB | Genre: Alternative
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz | Front Cover | © RCA Records Label

2017 debut album from the British band. Indie-Springsteens with arena ambitions give four-square guitar rock a refreshing, euphoric makeover. Sundara Karma aspire to the driving, rousing anthemia of Bruce Springsteen and Arcade Fire, with big ideas about death and sacrifice and music up to the task of reflecting same.

Britain quartet Sundara Karma arrive with shimmering guitars and great expectations, delivering a lengthily titled pop treatise on youth in the modern age. Produced by Larry Hibbitt (Hundred Reasons, Nothing But Thieves), Youth Is Only Ever Fun in Retrospect introduces the Reading-bred newcomers’ warmly anthemic sound and barely earned nostalgia. In frontman Oscar Pollack, the band have a charismatic, if somewhat familiar voice that can ably power these 12 tracks all the way back to the cheap seats, where they seem squarely aimed. Opener “A Young Understanding” sets the table in terms of dynamics with Pollack’s robust vocals punctuating a soaring, circular guitar pattern that reaches for the rafters and hangs on. In both tone and color, there is much of the ’80s rock-adoring earnestness in Sundara Karma’s sound as they strive for mid-period Springsteen desperation while sometimes borrowing Big Country’s knife-like guitar leads. By and large, though, this is 21st century rock written and played for a youthful (that word again) target audience of their peers that takes dynamic cues from first-wave millennial rockers like Arcade Fire and the Killers. High points like the opener, “Olympia,” and the slowly building “Be Nobody” show a band with stadium-sized ambitions and a penchant for dramatic pop hooks. Still, in spite of the band’s efforts, Youth fails to offer a great deal in the way of groundbreaking ideas or a fresh take on this style of rock. The production here is slick and modern, with bright digital undertones coloring what is essentially the work of somewhat straightforward guitar band. Sundara Karma have talent, ambition, and youth on their side, but so do a lot of other rising bands. In the end, it’s personality and distinction that endure.

01 – A Young Understanding
02 – Loveblood
03 – Olympia
04 – Happy Family
05 – Flame
06 – Lose the Feeling
07 – She Said
08 – Vivienne [Explicit]09 – Be Nobody
10 – Deep Relief
11 – Watching from Great Heights
12 – The Night



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