Originally beginning as a folk-rock duo just one year ago, three-piece acoustic-rock group The Floodgates have experienced a great deal, and have undergone significant change, in a very short space of time. The Tunbridge Wells natives quickly made a name for themselves on the local scene, are now gigging nationwide, and have already released their debut EP. And as if that wasn’t enough, the band are closing out the year with the release of their latest single, ‘You’.
On the surface, ‘You’ seems an uncomplicated song; it is comprised, simply, of a delicate vocal melody caressing simple percussion and unimposing guitar accompaniments. However, upon closer inspection, it becomes clear that the simplicity of each one of those elements is hiding something exceptional, the subtle brilliance of the track far less unassuming than it appears. Elegant vocal harmonies tactfully embellish key lyrics, multi-instrumental accents almost unconsciously provide a depth and diversity that may easily go unnoticed, but that is always present, nevertheless, and conscientious production, particularly during the piano breakdown, deftly influences the tone of the track.
Additionally, and most effectively, the melody that is present in the verse proceeds into the chorus, providing a sense of constancy and regularity, however, it remains in a much less salient capacity. The gradual introduction of piano, which crescendos as the chorus arrives, as well as the drum’s increasingly flamboyant flourishes, contributes to a more full and rounded sound which provides enough variety to distinguish the chorus itself from the preceding sounds. The Floodgates often walk a fine line between uniformity and tedium, but they walk it with confidence and precision.
Stylistically, ‘You’ is very much an electro-acoustic folk rock sound, which undoubtedly draws influences from the likes of Mumford and Sons, and Tom Odell, the monotone verses reminding one of the first, whilst the more melodic choruses resemble those of the latter.
For a band so tender in age, The Floodgates display a remarkable attention to detail, and possess a thoroughly promising ability to write songs that are both melodically engaging, and technically praiseworthy, not to mention poetically proficient. Building upon the successes that debut EP ‘God Knows’ garnered, their latest release, ‘You’, represents the next step on a long and fruitful road for the band.
Brace yourself. The Floodgates are about to open.