Bill Ryder-Jones' backing band step out of his shadows with melodic guitar pop
As Bill Ryder-Jones’ backing band, By The Sea always had potential; but the five-piece opt to tread a different path from the former Coral man as they step further out of his shadow on their second LP. ‘Endless Days, Crystal Sky’ is more in line with fellow Liverpudlians Echo & The Bunnymen, and a template of jangling guitars and world-weary vocals set amid spacious backdrops is quickly established. ‘These Days Fall’ is coated in melancholy that recalls Simple Minds, but it doesn’t last long. More hopeful melodies shine through ‘Youth”s playful nursery rhyme hooks and the glam-flecked ‘The Stranger Things’. By The Sea wear their obvious influences well on an album that enriches their city’s canon of melodic guitar pop.
Simon Jay Catling