Tangled Star – Our Man in Eden Hill EP

Tangled Star
Our Man in Eden Hill EP

Australia’s Tangled Star is a dreamy pop/rock band that fashion sunny melodies and easygoing riffs. The band possesses the distinct knack of creating catchy pop songs that hit just the right elements to keep a listener tuned in for a long time. Their latest EP, Our Man in Eden Hill, is a fine reminder of the band’s ability to craft smart, affecting music.

All of this is led by lead-singer and chief songwriter, Craig Hallsworth. His ginger-soaked voice is a fine accompaniment to these melodic songs. A song like “The Skaters” is evenly balanced with a reflective piano and Hallsworth’s gentle vocals. It’s the kind of song that starts out pleasant enough but can touch your heart in many ways. The sounds recall some of Radiohead’s better chords and progressions (especially the ending) and the music ends up being one of the EP’s highlights because of it.

The ending to “Sunny Day Losers # 12 & 35” is a laid back affair that has some of the album’s best country-style guitar. The song is a hazy tune that relies mostly on the guitar’s melodic exposure and delivery. Hallsworth’s voice is reminiscent of Stephen Malkmus but he carries his own distinct timber and when the music swells, so does his voice. He is able to reach high levels of emotion and intensity while still sounding in control, especially when he belts out, “We were feeling bad, about a sunny day.” The music and lyrics fittingly evoke the feel to a sunny day and its blissful laziness.

The songs on the EP all lead to the fifth and final song—a near eleven-minute song that begins with a playful and cheery guitar part before quickly changing pace at the minute and a half mark. A Pink Floyd guitar line appears and “The Waiter is Deceased” ends up being a lot deeper than the deceiving title lets off. As naturally as possible, the song is sustained by the gripping guitar and complimentary piano. It slowly fades away into a gradual wither and it peacefully closes the album out.

This is a quiet and serene listen, one that can touch people on different levels. And although it is only an EP, it doesn’t cheat you in terms of quality. The lead off single, “tosleepingpeople,” starts off the EP in a light and brisk manner and the wave of good music you ride until the album’s closer is one that I would recommend to anyone.