Tribes – ‘Himalaya’

Tribes - 'Himalaya'

A mountain-moving cry from the heart

We’ve been hammering [a]Tribes[/a]’ fine and forthcoming debut [b]‘Baby’[/b] in the office of late, and the part where everyone sort of goes a bit quiet and starts swaying in their chairs and humming along in a toneless and broken fashion is usually this track. It’s a keystone of their live show as well, and it’s easy to see why. A mountain-moving cry from the heart and the depths of the Valley Of Well And Truly Dumped, it finds Johnny Lloyd lost in the high passes of heartbreak before being slowly guided back to the reverb-shimmered light of day by loyal sonic Sherpa and guitarist Dan White.

Johnny’s unashamedly full-on vocal recalls prime era Borrell, though the languid, fuck-it-she’s-gone-let’s-hit-the-offy verses are subtler than that, with the sort of slowly unfurling melodies and slinky basslines that made ‘Suck It And See’ so compulsive. The chorus, though, is just massive. Raw riffs that wouldn’t sit out of place on [a]Radiohead[/a]’s ‘The Bends’ and chorused, magnetically singalong-able “[i]woah oh oh[/i]” backing vocals scale the peaks of pain and passion, as Johnny howls “[i]does it move you, the state I’m in?[/i]” from the roof of the world, ice-picking his cold jilter right in the soul. Y’know what? It does, and it’d be a hard heart that wouldn’t relent; making a mountain out a molehill never sounded so headily high.

Duncan Gillespie, writer