The Proper Ornaments
Tough Love Records
For the follow-up to their acclaimed 2014 debut, Wooden Head, the London-based songwriting duo of James Hoare and Max Oscarnold decamped to a studio with touring bandmates drummer Robert Syme and bassist Daniel Nellis. The original eight-track recordings were scrapped due to a mechanical malfunction, however, and were then re-recorded in the more intimate setting of Hoare’s bedroom. Those technical struggles aren’t reflected in the mellow and atmospheric moods of Foxhole but the more personal surroundings certainly play a part in the leisurely rhythms. The album is also more emotional and sparse compared with their upbeat fuzz-fuelled debut. The simple folk of Bridge by a Tunnel will delight Wilco fans while many of the acoustic-based tracks have a dreamy, sun-drenched 1960s vibe. When We Were Young and 1969 (described by the band as “a space travel song, like Air’s Moon Safari but covered by Kasabian”) are just two of the many highlights, sounding like a certain Mr Lennon at his poppy best.