I'd like to start this review by apologising sincerely to my editor, the devilishly handsome all-round 405 overlord Oliver Primus, because at time of writing this review is about a week and a half late. Sorry.

Now I know you're probably thinking that this is either an admission of heavy procrastination on my part, or just unnecessary padding out of a thin body of writing. Maybe I'm just lazily drawing out an experience that doesn't need to be quite this long. Maybe this sentence you're reading right now is actually some post-modern foreshadowing and/or a metaphor for the album I'm reviewing.

Hey! Still here? Great! So I'm about a hundred words in and I've not mentioned the album I'm talking about once. Yours Sincerely, Doctor Hardcore is the debut album by Gallops and I suppose I should tell you a little about it.

Yours Sincerely… is an instrumental synthesized rock-opera of an album, with huge, glorious wizards-with-machine-guns-exploding-from-a-ball-of-light statements of intent in the first few tracks. Or, at least I think that's what they were going for. It sort of falls short of the mark all too often. The climaxes feel cheap and the build ups seem overly long.

Production-wise this album sounds lovely. It's incredibly listenable and every single instrument sits wonderfully within a cosy little sonic bed – nothing feels intrusive or out of place.

Really though, I'm struggling to find anything more to say about this record as a whole. It's… fine. Like, that's all I can really say. I don't hate it but I don't love it. It's an album that exists and it doesn't do anything either way. It doesn't even feel like a cohesive album. A lot of the songs on here start out with an inherent 'groove' to them and head in an interesting direction, but when 24 bars later it's still the same idea played to death, it starts to get old fast. Kind of like when you say a word aloud over and over again until it loses all meaning and it's just an empty sound – that's pretty much this record in a nutshell. Clocking in at just under an hour it's a struggle to get through without losing concentration at least once or twice.

Instrumental records have to really grab at you and force you to listen without you even realising they're doing it. That's the beauty of records like Brontide's Sans Souci, Vessels' Helioscope or Battles' Mirrored (which honestly, I know that every instrumental synth/guitar band tries to avoid comparisons to, but when you outright carbon copy the synth sounds you're not doing yourself any favours).

Maybe that's it though. Maybe this is an album for the disaffected amongst us who wanted Mirrored 2: This Time There's Heavy Guitars!

I imagine that in an excited furor due to this album's late release date and general lack of hate-able sounds it'll end up in some end of year lists, but honestly this time next year I'll have forgotten all about it and you will too.