I’m not sure if it’s the nostalgia, the intimacy of the small venue they played the other week, or the hangover that I was shaking off… but Twin Atlantic have once again taken over my life.
If you knew me during university and a little before then, you would know that my love for this wee band was really strong, maybe even bordering on obsessive. It is with regret, that I admit, in my final year of uni I did stray from the path of Twin Atlantic ever so slightly. At least as far as their 2014 release of Great Divide was concerned. I’m not sure why exactly, but it just wasn’t clicking with me. Fast forward SIX YEARS however, and I’m singing along to ‘Heart And Soul’; – lead single from said album; not missing a beat and what’s more, really enjoying it. Sorry for dismissing it so soon guys, I genuinely feel quite bad about it. Although not quite as bad as realising I had forgotten about their 2016 album GLA. Really Sam, call yourself a fan? Writing this post has alerted me to the fact that I have a lot of catching up to do, or am at least in need of a refresher’s course in all things Twin Atlantic. This will definitely happen, but for now, let’s talk about their new album.
POWER. Never has there been a name so apt for an album. If the last two albums were the band developing themselves, this one is a real breakthrough. Now the last two were not bad by any means, but Power is the one that pulled me back in, so consider this a personal account rather than critical. Sure, seeing them perform some of it in a tiny venue may have been a major selling point for me, but I stand by the fact that this is one of my favourite albums of the year so far. Every time I listen to it, I have a new favourite song; this is not a one listen and done album. The more time you lend to it, the more it gives back, with energy, emotion and just pure satisfaction.
I think the main difference between this album and the two that preceded it is the real strength of it all. Power has all the elements we have loved throughout the history of the band; the true to form Scottish accent and the raw rock sound, now complimented with an electronica edge – it just punches through with so much more growth and refinement. Furthermore, the passion for it shows through their live performance. It was the most comfortable I’ve seen them on stage, looking back on old photos from the first show I saw them – they just seem to give so much more. It’s so fun. Simply the best fun. I almost have no words.
The fact is, for me, they never fail to write a song that I won’t be singing for days. Take the classic ‘Crash Land’; they play that live and nearly everyone in that crowd is singing along, complete with Scottish accents – faux or not. Moments like this show the true connection the band hold with their fans, and it is honestly overwhelming how much they love what they do and how they celebrate that. These days I’m having random outbursts of ‘NOVOCAAAAAINE’ and ‘MY FOOLISH ELECTRIC HEART’, and to tell you the truth, I can’t stop smiling about it. Discovering new bands is fun, but falling back in love with old favourites and following them on their new journey? It is just the best.
With each of their smaller shows to celebrate the launch of Power, the band have stuck around to meet fans and sign records. Reconnecting with them like this was just on another level, and having Craig Kneale and Ross McNae recognise me from an interview six years ago, christ alive, I was absolutely buzzing. Imagine me a further two years before that interview, waiting desperately outside Southampton Guildhall just to catch them on their way out for a quick ‘er hello, er i love ya music, er, can i get a photo, er please’. Tell 18 year old Sam that she would be meeting them again eight years later, and having Sam McTrusty lightheartedly mock her – she might have died. There was a brief moment when I discussed with Ross how long it had been, and how we were getting old. Sorry about that Ross. The funny thing is that I realised seeing bands like this makes me feel so ageless. There is something SO special about the bands you used to love, coming back into your life, even if you were the one who left. Not to sound too slushy but that is what makes me love music so much. It transcends everything and creates a moment of its very own, ready and waiting for you to return when you see fit.
Ah, Twin Atlantic. I may have ignored one or two albums for a while, but I know in my heart that this band will stick with me for a very long time. It sickens me to say this, but writing about this silly Scottish band has a got me a little emotional. Time to head off and catch up on all my lost time.