Actors, “It Will Come To You”

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written by I Die You Die
March 9, 2018 | Category: Album Reviews

Actors - It Will Come To You

It Will Come To You
Artoffact Records

Actor’s debut LP certainly doesn’t feel like one to us. Sure, that could be due to geography in our own subjective cases: seeing the band play out every couple of months for the past two years has certainly provided a familiarity with their material which isn’t universally shared. But the steady releases of singles, EPs, and videos which preceded It Will Come To You have had a much broader reach, meaning that Actors’ style – a polished and melodic yet economical take on post-punk – has been well-established both in the ears of listeners and in the hands of the band themselves. It Will Come To You thus feels like a consolidation or confirmation of the apparent ease with which the Vancouver quartet trade in memorable tunes.

A goodly portion of how pleasing the LP is to listen to and enjoy comes from good, workmanlike songwriting and arrangement, paired with contemporary production that positions them outside of straight revivalist post-punk. The mournful “Face Meets Glass” has traces of new romanticism tucked into its brief spoken passages and warbling synths and guitars, but the pulsing backbeat gives the song a sleek modern engine. Pre-release track “Bury Me” is most notable for it’s damnably catchy chorus and repeating synth figure, but you can’t discount the way the growling bass is seated squarely beneath bandleader Jason Corbett’s vocals and guitar accents, imbuing the tune with additional dancefloor appeal. Whether via the rich foggy reverbs that lay across the galloping opener “L’Appel Du Vide” or the clean, straightforward separation of instruments in the mix of “Crystal”, the story of It Will Come To You is told by smart recording choices that highlight rather than obscure its songs.

Those same choices help to massage and integrate the band’s influences into the fabric of the songs. There are plenty of classic post-punk bands (and also not a few classic rock acts, full stop) whose DNA can be sniffed out in It Will Come To You. However, the combination of immediacy, clearly delineated instrumentation, and the patinas of echo and feedback Corbett dusts over everything ensures that none of those inspirations ever overshadow the sonic identity Actors have staked out. To be blunt, trying to detect minute hints of a certain musical predecessor, canonical or otherwise, just isn’t as fun as listening to the synths, guitars and vocals quickly cycling in and out of the spotlight, each with its own contribution to the undeniably poppy appeal of It Will Come To You.

Since becoming aware of them, the words we always come back to when discussing Actors are ones like “professional”, “together”, or perhaps most tellingly “ready”. Those aren’t necessarily qualities that are highly prized in underground music circles, but they do point to how the band come across on stage and now, with It Will Come To You, on record. Actors have zeroed in on their myriad strengths and know exactly how to showcase them to the world, in a concise, enjoyable and infectious LP. It’s a hell of a debut album, and one we’re happy to recommend.

Buy it.

One Response

  • D says:

    I’ve listened to the album at least 5 times all the way through and it’s so “ready” (nice nomenclature!) that I’d never have guessed it was a debut album. I’m not a huge post-punk fan in general, but the way Actors weave synthwave through the tracks in makes it a delicious, varied blend – and the skill shines because they make it all just work.

    If I HAVE to pick something to criticize, I’d nitpick and say the last track doesn’t really add anything for me, and it’s one I skip. Sometimes. Because I’d rather cycle back to the first track and start listening to the whole thing again.

    Definitely going on my “best of the year” short list.

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