Brighton duo Blood Red Shoes return with their fifth studio album Get Tragic today via their own label, Jazzlife. The pair had a rocky road ahead when creating this album, facing a list of issues including personal burnouts and getting sick of one another.
They’ve said that the title comes from the realisation that the way they’d been going about life in the lead up to it had been tragic. So rather than sit in the misery, they spun it in their favour. Sound wise the album seems to speak to the roots of what made Blood Red Shoes popular in the first place. It’s bold and defiant, even spritely.
Whatever Laura-May Carter and Steven Ansell did in that time off has clearly put a spring in their step. There’s no been there, done that and bought the t-shirt that usually comes with a band this far into their career.
Where guitars were the only way forward for Blood Red Shoes for a long time, Carter’s broken arm spurred her to take on keyboards for a while. Songs like ‘Nearer’ and ‘Eye to Eye’ take on elements of darker synths harking back to the likes of Little Boots. For Gretsch purists there’s still thrashings of intricate guitars that Jack White would be proud of on songs like ‘Anxiety’ so fear not.
Overall, Get Tragic is living proof that there’s ways to change your sound without selling your soul. Blood Red Shoes’ time out clearly gave them a good idea of who were when they began and where they want to be in relation to that. Get Tragic takes on the formidable cool and brashness that made 2008’s Box of Secrets such a promising come up whilst also reflecting upon the current state of their music scene.
Blood Red Shoes capture a modern view of the scene they’ve been in for over a decade whilst maintaining their own sound which isn’t an easy task these days.
Listen to Get Tragic right here.
Featured Image: Bridie Florence