Reviews Great Cynics I Feel Weird

Great Cynics

I Feel Weird

Naming a record I Feel Weird is a statement about the psyche of Great Cynics, and an applicable one at that (for the band, not necessarily the members). The band’s third record, it wavers between melodic pop punk with digressions into exploratory indie-alt rock. What that means in real English is that they play punk-ish songs with a lot of emotion at the core, but without the drama of that genre known as emo. It’s got more depth, man.

The band’s strengths come via the melodic deliveries, building powerful emotional stanzas that flow and plow past the listener with a gripping hook within that picks up that underlying piece from the start of the song and intertwines into something larger. It works great in a song like “North Street” or the big singalong of “Lost in You,” and seems to have a little more smoothness in the songs fronted by bassist Iona Cairns. Trading off vocals roughly 50-50, Cairns sings lead on half and guitarist Giles Bidder sings on the others. It’s a nice mix-up, though Bidder’s songs tend to get a little more stagnant, sitting on the melodies without the same urgency. An example of this comes with “Kind of Like,” with its choppy ‘90s alt-rock hooks.

The band is filling a nice niche in bouncing between the emotionally-tinged alternastyle and more melodic punk and, when it’s on, it’s on, well exemplified in the opening minute of the album on “I Want You Around.” The record is a little inconsistent across the board, and when they add more variables, as in “I Know Nothing” and “By the Sea,” it falters. The latter, the record’s closing track, feels tacked on and doesn’t add to the whole, whereas the former song gets choppy and flatlines after a strong start.
Described by the band on their press sheet as “this is one’s realizing that the only person you have is yourself in a completely up and down world.” I would definitely say this tone has been achieved, for better and worse, on I Feel Weird.

7.4 / 10Loren
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7.4 / 10

7.4 / 10

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