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8/10

Pelican - What We All Come To Need

Mike Kemp
Mike Kemp 26 October at 14.14
Pelican - What We All Come To Need Cover

Best Pelican record ever? We’ll let you decide…

To get a sense of how far Pelican have come in the past eight years, you need only listen back to the expansive down-tuned doom of their debut EP and then contrast with the taut, song-based compositions that made up previous full-length ‘City Of Echoes’. The latter was a definite departure for the band which, for all the accolades it received, proved a cause of consternation for some diehard fans. So what now? The answer, it would seem, is bring back the stonking great riffs. Just wrap your ears around ‘The Creeper’ – an appropriately slow, bass-heavy dirge featuring a guest spot from Sunn O)))’s Greg Anderson – or the chugging palm-muted finale of ‘Ephemeral’, which appears noticeably beefed up from its earlier EP incarnation. But while it might be tempting to view ‘What We All Come To Need’ as Pelican returning to their roots, things aren’t always so clear-cut. For one thing, there’s the vocals – yes, vocals! – on closing number ‘Final Breath’. In a move that’s as inspired as it is unexpected, the soulful tones of Allen Epley (The Life And Times) glide over a hazy space-rock backdrop, building up to a glorious, stratosphere-scraping climax. Best Pelican record ever? We’ll let you decide…

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