Where the Heaven Are We has been a long time coming. Swim Deep's first souncloud upload, 'Isla Vista' was released to the internet two years ago, when they first started appearing on 'ones to watch' lists. Since then, they've released a string of well-received singles, graced the pages of most every music magazine going, and sold out London's village underground, all without an album to their name. Now they're finally releasing their much-discussed and long-awaited debut - is it any good?
In short, yes. The boys original plan was to release the album earlier in the year, with vague suggestions of April and May being thrown about last year. The delay couldn't have worked more in their favour, as Where The Heaven Are We is undoubtedly a summer album. Comprised of singles as well as a few unheard tracks (although definitely not unheard to those who've seen the band live - they've been playing 'Make My Sun Shine' live for over a year) the album is an incredibly easy and pleasant listen.
Opening with the slightly misplaced 'Intro' (which definitely would've made more sense followed by 'She Changes The Weather)', the record kicks off as it means to continue, with Austin's floaty, laidback vocals eerily layered over gentle guitars. Unlike their long-time Birmingham pals Peace, the Swim Deep boys have a more distinct style running through their album, which makes for a more cohesive listen than In Love.
That's not to say the songs sound the same. Like early demo 'Beach Justice', new track 'Make My Sun Shine' pairs Austin's deceptively androgynous vocal over a breezy, catchy chorus that makes for one of the album's more immediate highlights. Others include 'Stray', a more urgent and percussive take on the Swim Deep sound that's just begging to be a single , and of course their most recent and accomplished effort 'She Changes The Weather.'
Besides a few lyrical hiccups ("Do I want my head in the clouds / if the cloud is raining" is nestled in the otherwise lovely 'Colour Your Ways'), Swim Deep are releasing the nostalgic, romantic, irritatingly catchy album they've always been capable of. It may have taken them a little longer than expected to release their debut, but it seems to have been time well spent.