The first taste of a band can normally result in many different reactions. Especially if you are unsure of the band, or artist, themselves. For Archivist, there is a deep history of near-misses with now successful acts which have gone before them. Whilst looking into Rory Simmons and Ed Begley's past, you will find name drops for bands such as Mystery Jets, Friendly Fires, Crystal Castles, and even Dry The River, as they have swum around the peripheries of the musical mainstream for many years. Still very much in their infancy, the Archivist EP is here to pronounce to ourselves what these two are all about. After spending some time with the record, I can confidently say that I have absolutely no idea what Archivist is about, but I'm quite excited by it.

Opening up with 'Wonder Through', a track which carries a well proportioned layering of electronica against some nicely aimed vocals, you'd think that this was the band setting their stall out front and centre, but you'd be wrong. Juxtaposed with the next track, which sounds like the sort of music you could imagine Jeff Buckley would be making if he were still alive, they cross over from cold, steel worlds, into something natural and worryingly so, with an effortlessness that flows through majestically.

Unfortunately, the turn of pace is interrupted by 'We Can't Be Friends', and odd track in that it holds a lot of great ideas, but never forms into anything you can fully grasp and relate to. Luckily, the opposite feeling comes across with 'Swim', a track which marries jazz elements with their well-refined electronica in a similar way to Radiohead circa Hail To The Theif. It's a track which sounds like these guys have been doing this for years... which they have. Closing off the record is 'Chancer', a cheeky, funky, lively, up-beat ending, which begs your attention. It certainly comes across very much as 'electronic singer-songwriter' fare, but its positioning on the record is smart, because everything before it tells you that this isn't the be-all and end-all with these guys. Plus, like everything else on this record, you never feel swamped by all that's happening, the production really is very well done, and by the time the track ends, you may not be looking for another spin, but you certainly will want to hear more from what these guys have to offer you.

It's hard to praise the record as a collection of tracks, and how they work together, because it seems the intention is to define a band ready to make a break for it. There's a lot to like, and it is definitely going to be interesting to see where their interests take them, but this seems to be a record more for the band's benefit than anyone else's. Tentatively seeing if this whole thing is going to work. The answer is that yes, absolutely, the ingredients are all there. The Archivist EP is not a journey you take with the band, it's more like flipping to the last page of five small novellas. Sure, you like what you read, but that's not truly the point.