It’s been thirteen years since Wirral quintet The Coral dropped their self-titled debut and blew us all away. At the peak of their fame, it was their unique and technical brilliance that set them apart from the crowd and their ability to write indisputable bangers didn’t hurt either.
Just look to ‘Dreaming Of You’ and ‘In The Morning’ as a sample of some of their greatest work; they were undoubtedly one of the finest bands of the early 00’s.
As the 00’s progressed, The Coral’s magic began to fade and the albums that followed, such as ‘Nightfreak and The Sons of Becker’, ‘The Invisible Invasion’, ‘Roots & Echoes’ and ‘Butterfly House’ left a lot to be desired. It wasn’t the sound of The Coral that we were used to hearing or that won us over in the first place.
A further blow came to the band when chief architect, Bill Ryder-Jones announced his departure. An “indefinite hiatus” was declared in 2012 and now the band are back and ready to take their place at the top of the charts once more. Although, the question remains, do they still have what it takes to reign victorious?
The result is an album titled ‘Distance Inbetween’ that favours a moodier and melancholic approach with shades of a Pink Floyd nature at times. Critics have said that it contains “all the hooks that once made them great” and they’re not wrong. ‘Chasing The Trail of a Dream’ is an instant favourite with psych-rock tendencies; this track is bound to excite immediately courtesy of Ian Skelly’s infectious beats.
The guitar solo in ‘Million Eyes’ is reminiscent of Syd Barrett at the height of his Pink Floyd fame. Other highlights on the album can be found in the form of ‘Fear Machine’ which is a textbook grower and fans will no doubt fall head over heels for. ‘Miss Fortune’ is a cohesive and imaginative as they come and sees the band truly finding their stride once again.
‘Distance Inbetween’ marks an immediate evolution from previous material and feels darker and more restrained in places but provides the same psych rock glisten that made us fall in love with The Coral all those years ago. Their comeback album has put them in good stead for 2016.
Now, the band have a series of festival appearances and headline shows to conquer in the coming months and we have no doubt that they will completely ace every one of them. This album is a glorious conclusion to the saga that The Coral started thirteen years ago.