Sea Power – ‘Everything Was Forever’ review: a defiant statement against insularity

The Brighton band – notably having dropped the word 'British' from their moniker – return with a brutal but beautiful album that we can all relate to now

Britain can often feel like an awful place to be right now. A corrupt government brazenly trashes democracy on a daily basis, with the farcical partygate scandals continuing to engulf the establishment. It’s like a never-ending episode of The Thick Of It. Add to that a brutal pandemic, soaring energy prices and bands being fucked over by Brexit and you’ve pretty much got the perfect shitshow.

To make matters even more absurd, Sea Power have found themselves having to drop the word ‘British’ from their moniker due to jingoistic misapprehensions from deluded nationalists. “It just felt like a bit of a weird thing… that was colouring the meaning of songs and the world of our band in general,” frontman Scott ‘Yan’ Wilkinson recently told NME.

In ‘Everything Was Forever’, the Brighton-formed six-piece have constructed a hopeful and defiant record that rails against ugly, insular points of view. Take rollicking recent single ‘Two Fingers’. On the one hand, the titular V sign conveys contempt and anger; on the other it exudes peace and hope as frontman Yan sings “Two fingers for the dead / Two fingers for the living / Two fingers for the world that we all live in” over rousing guitar lines and a driving drum beat.

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Synth-y, stabbing single ‘Folly’, continues this bittersweet paradox as he ponders “if the end is near” and if we’re “all fucked” before pulling us back from the brink with a promise that one day we’re “gonna wake up in a different world”. Meanwhile, the glacial ‘Green Goddess’ (a ballad dedicated to Yan’s wife, whose favourite colour is green), offers a kinetic escape route from the “dark and complicated things going on” in the real world, while gentle opener ‘Scaring At The Sky’ provides further soothing respite with its woozy downbeat tempo.

Elsewhere, the soaring Echo And The Bunnymen-style anthem ‘Transmitter’, finds Yan at his most lost as he angrily contemplates “Another day, another age / I thought that we were in this all together”, before he hopelessly realises he’s “more confused than ever” as dark forces continue to pull “all the levers”. It’s undoubtedly a song written for the moment and one we can all resonate with right now.

We may be living in shit times but in ‘Everything Was Forever’, Sea Power have produced an album that is both brutal and beautiful, and which offers us all some much needed hope.

Details

Release date: February 18

Record label: Golden Chariot

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