Label: Motive Sounds Release date: 22/11/10 Link: Myspace Over The Wall is the collective effort of Ben Hillman and Gav Prentice, two musicians who crossed paths in Glasgow and decided to form a band playing ‘euphoric folk-pop’. With the aid of crisp, jangly guitars and a variety of different synth sounds this vision is brought to life on Treacherous, albeit in stuttering, nascent fawn-like form. Like another feted songwriting partnership Lennon and McCartney (they were in The Beatles), both musicians swap vocal duties and each has a distinctive style. Prentice, with his broad Scottish accent, favours guitar-driven, crisp indie-pop. A clear contrast to Hillman’s familiar Yorkshire voice, expounding words of wisdom throughout. The results are mixed but often enjoyable. Opener, ‘Shifts’ is carried by some brass fanfare which contrasts nicely with the guitar. This sets the tone for most of the album. Funky guitar riffs abound, accompanied by brass and synths to give an all too rare, but winning combination. The best examples are the quite lovely swirling guitar on ‘Don’t Listen to Them, Son’ and icy, resonating layers on the standout track ‘Angela’. Inevitably there’s moments that simply aren’t as good. ‘Two Nightmares’ is Hillman recounting some bad dreams, sounding like a northern version of The Streets, and is about twice as long as it needs to be. But mostly their atmospheric pop is likable for the sophistication of it’s composition. The band always try to get by on as little as possible, creating music where the beauty is in the austerity of it. There’s no vain impulses to pack as many different sounds into the album as possible. It just doesn’t need it. The results here show that. Treacherous is a debut with some promise. The songs aren’t always a high standard but when Over The Wall peak, it’s something quite special to witness. Photobucket