Reading interviews with and about the background of Leeds based duo The Horn The Hunt, there is the feeling that adventure is in their blood whether physical or artistically. Their second album Depressur Jolie is an instant affirmation of that thought upon hearing the thirteen tracks living within its borders. Like little exposures from an exciting journey the tracks reveal and instil images of rewarding struggles inner and from the outside. The sounds of Clare Carter and Joseph Osborne have been labelled as pop music by some but that simple tag does not do justice to the depths and layers within their songs, certainly not those that live and breathe inside Depressur Jolie.
The album opens with the title track and what a track it is. From the moment ‘Depressur Jolie’ erupts into life with a big deep resonating bass riff surrounded by soaring synths a sensational ride ahead seems a guarantee. The song is a glorious weave of musical ideas and sounds that attach themselves to the side of the driving rhythm creating a musical kaleidoscope. All this makes for an impressive canvas for the stunning vocal ability of Carter to swoop, soar and play upon, though there is nothing light about her delivery or skill. As the album evolves song after song she with ease travels from dark and aggressive through smooth and controlled to a J-pop like delivery, often within the same song. The big folk drawl of ‘Harpoon’ takes over proceedings with a glorious imposing dark slow bass riff joined by crashing guitars and keys over a twanging series of chords. This and the next track, the recent single ‘Raptor’ a song with a rhythm that seems to stalk like the predator of the title, show The Horn The Hunt come from the same creative pool as Dutch band De Staat; builders of multi layered songs with sometimes the most unexpected sounds which always work wonderfully.
Carter and Osborne can do mellow and more straight forward too as the emotive ballad ‘Be The One’ with vocals so controlled and skilful they raise hairs on the back of the neck shows. ‘Lava Dreams’ and ‘Bear Trap’ deliver it even more simple with lean synths sounds and rhythms underneath the enticing vocals; both tracks recalling the basic organ and guitar genius of 80’s band Young Marble Giants but with attitude. Of course simple for The Horn The Hunt is complicated for many but they show they have the vision and ability to paint glorious musical pictures in many ways. ‘Henry’s Out’ and ‘Animal Magic’ deserve a special mention too, the first with its great synth indie pop groove over a tapping finger type rhythm and expansive chorus, and the latter for its smooth pop sound over soft tribalistic beats and cries.
Depressur Jolie is a musical blessing for the ear, inventive, unique, and best of all extremely enjoyable. Where many try and fail when being creative with sounds and what seem on the surface like random noises, The Horn The Hunt excel making each song an event which offers something new on each subsequent play. An album of mini tales and big sounds Depressur Jolie is a must listen for anyone looking for originality. The album is released on White Label Music on 23 May 2011 and the bands official website is @ www.thehornthehunt.com