Free Swim is the solo project from Paul Colto, lead singer of Arcs. Yolanda The Panda is possibly the only concept EP to have songs played from it by Huw Stephens, Steve Lamacq and Nemone on BBC Radio. Telling the story of Yolanda, a panda that climbs Mount Everest, along with the help of an overbearing Englishman and a Willet, the EP puts you right in the thick of the action by painting a vivid picture of the journey Yolanda goes through. 'I Want To Be A Mountaineer's mix of bluesy keyboard and Super Furry Animals-style vocal ramblings lets you know what Yolanda's ambitions are, and the distorted melodies are reminiscent of the Furries at their most upbeat. Lots of effects are also used bringing to mind another of Britains' finest eccentric indie-pop bands, Bearsuit.

Childish yet challenging, 'Harmlessly English' tells the story of Yolanda meeting the pompous Englishman whose "heart was in the right place", amongst a mixture of glockenspiels, lo-fi guitar, tribal drumming and all the eccentricities of Guillemots. Promising the panda he will take him to China, the excitement begins to build up and is shown in the music, it feels almost like you are going on the expedition with them, and it is easy to visualise the anticipation on Yolanda's face. It feels like a real show. Then you remember this is a Panda climbing a mountain, but it really doesn't matter at all. 'Swooping Swoopily Like A Swooping Swooper' sees the return of Paul's friend who featured on Free Swim's debut EP Two Hands Is OK. In Art Brut style, he introduces himself: "Hello, it's me again, if you've downloaded the first Free Swim EP, you might recognise me, yet I've been roped in on this one". He goes on to tell how Yolanda got into trouble when arriving by ferry in China. The advancement of the story takes place amidst MBV-style noise and elements of the more exciting bands from the early 2000s like The Cooper Temple Clause and The Electric Soft Parade. At the end of the song, the guest speaker tells you what he's up to in life and promises he'll see us on the next EP.

The finale 'Scoring Bamboo Shoots' starts off as the best Panda-based song Burt Bacharach never wrote. It has a waltzy feel for the first minute and a half but then the loud guitars come bursting in in typically frenzied post-rock fashion, before going back to a more classic feel to end the EP. All four songs are so imaginative and this is a celebratory way to rejoice in Yolanda's tremendous achievement, as the Panda scores bamboo shoots "Like they're pills". Free Swim haven't so much thrown away the rulebook on concept pieces, but replaced it with a far more entertaining pop-up colouring book.

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