In the same way that writing about writing can be considered hackneyed, making music about music might be somewhat of a taboo, but after doing just that, Another Michael see their risk pay off. 'New Music and Big Pop' ducks and weaves between folk, pop, and alternative indie genres to craft sincere tracks about insecurities, difficult memories, and the profound joy of music.
The serene tone of falsetto Michael Doherty takes centre stage, slotting effortlessly into jumping tracks like 'Big Pop' or solemn folk dirge 'Not Home'. The versatility of these tracks is easily the most impressive feat of the album that has clearly been inspired by a number of broad spanning influences. Opening song 'New Music' is a showcase in the band's ability to craft a sound full of depth as it inflates from humble fingerpicking acoustic into lively, choral hums and spacey guitar. It's also here we see Another Michael's vulnerability as they sing "I am thinking about my own life and for that I am ashamed", a bare-chested admission of neurosis that intimately draws us into the heart of the music.
These intimate moments are in no short supply. 'What The Hell Is Going On' is a refreshingly story-driven song that follows a relationship through its melancholic last days before total separation. Although the lyrics are straightforward, the simple guitar accompaniment and layered vocals supply the song with an atmosphere of hazy summer that sets the scene beautifully. All the while, Doherty's words have stark emotional weight, fuelled by previous experiences.
In this album, we hear Another Michael say they "want to make something timeless" and with such obvious talent for writing relatable music in a wide range of genres and tones, it's not hard to imagine that they will get exactly what they want.