Roaring, inventive and wild, Croupier’s self-titled debut album is punchy without being unbearably weighty – but the Wicklow band’s passionate energy does not necessarily translate directly into a recording.
Croupier is like And So I Watch You From Afar encountering Glen Hansard’s screaming vocal via Foals. There is something delicate, yet beautifully heavy about the album.
An instrumental master-class, Croupier is compositional genius – most evident on ‘Red Lemon’.
Innovative guitar riffs are married together to express a well-formulated creation.
Croupier are dynamic in their instrumentation – their compositions rise to a rapturous crescendo; particularly on ‘Panama’, a recommended download.
It is clear that Croupier are a highly energetic and engaging act, but as the album progresses, their whole shtick begins to wear a little thin. We can hear the sparks flying, but we want to see them as well.
Throughout the recording, Croupier do what a lot of guitar bands are doing right now – they experiment with their vocals, and use the voice as an additional instrument. This enhances some arrangements, but extracts from others.
Regardless, Croupier is a rousing debut. A theatrical recording, it must be experienced live.