Indie music is a bit of a hit and miss genre for me.
Now don’t get me wrong, when an indie band get it right they get it right. Look at Queens of the Stone Age, Noel Gallagher’s Flying Birds or Royal Blood, there needs to be a delicate balance with Indie-Rock, more so than say its heavier contemporaries.
Indie music needs to have its moments to be the soundtrack to stargazing with your loved one, but needs that excitement to keep the audience going, before they run out of that gluten free rum they swear is much better than Captain Morgan’s and is £50 more expensive.
When asked about reviewing Bodega, my initial research showed all the usual buzzwords: ‘fun‘, ‘thought provoking‘ and the one term that nearly made me laugh my latte through my nose ‘exciting‘. To that person I ask, exciting?! F**k me, we have different definitions of excitement!
This was before I realised the journalist in question was once an NME journalist, so we probably do have different idea of excitement – just waking up in the morning knowing I am not a journalist for that happy-clappy cult of smug vegan fart sniffers is all the excitement I need (Um… Well… Ok then… A little strong perhaps? – Slightly More Moderate Editor)
How can I describe ‘Endless Scroll’ – well take this journey with me and maybe we can come up with our answer. The album starts with ‘How Did This Happen?’, a question I fittingly have asked myself, the more I got through the running time.
The music is a hodgepodge of tasteless, distorted Post-Punk guitar that doesn’t really do much and Bob Dylan style vocals – you know the type, it’s not quite talking, but it’s not quite singing. It’s not quite satire, but it’s not quite “life is meaningless” and it is as if the bands lead vocalist Ben Hozie is trying to convey what most of his fan base sound like after several of the aforementioned gluten free rums: lazy, but oh so edgy.
In defence, secondary vocalist Nikki Belfiglio actually provided a better backdrop to the album. If it was just her on vocal duties, I probably could have put up with this album a bit better, as the lyrics she used had a bit more of a punch to them.
Then I had to contend with the tedium that is the instrumental work. Here’s where I am little out of my element, but I don’t need to be a huge lover of Indie to know when something seems like it is stuck on repeat.
The music does just that, there’s nothing to break up the endless monotony and therefore no clear identity, it wants to be a rock ‘n’ roll record with tracks like ‘Name Escape’ or ‘Bookmarks’, but there’s no teeth to the sound. Then the album tries to get into this melancholic sound of sickly sweet ballads with tracks such at ‘Jack in Titanic’ and again, it doesn’t leave a lot to imagination, a collective shrug.
There’s nothing overly offensive to ‘Endless Scroll‘, it’s just very average and leaves one feeling fairly empty. Bodega are Art-House schlock, by time the album was coming to an end with their mercifully short run time of thirty-three minutes, I was very keen on this album ending and wondering, who would actually like this fresh hell of hipster shoe gazing mediocrity.
I can actually visualise their shows audiences, a mish-mash of neo-hippies complaining about technology killing the planet whilst taking selfies for their Instagrams. The Sailor Jerry type males, with top knots and striped shirts – probably an art teacher, but always talking in furrowed brows about how they are dad of the year, because they won’t let their kids near contact sports.
All this followed by the worst offenders of the bunch – insurance workers.
At the end of the day ‘Endless Scroll’ was just OK, yet the funny part to all of this is most of their ‘satirical’ lyrics will fall on deaf ears or posted on a snap-chat post under the hash-tag #inspirational. A combination of dull vocals and toothless music with all the passion and grace of a toothless b**w-j*b.