Follow-up albums are notoriously difficult territory for bands – with the exception of immortally relevant acts such as Right Said Fred and Lou Bega. For Seabellies, whose 2010 debut with electronic indie rock LP, By Limbo Lake, saw them go from virtually unknown skinny-leg wearing rockers, to sort-of known skinny-leg wearing rockers, the journey from one album to the next was not just about survival, but expansion.
Working with ridiculously talented and starkly contrasting producers, Tim Whitten and Berkfinger, Fever Belle has achieved that rare state of slick studio production without sounding sterile.
Though there isn’t a lot of new ground explored by the band since By Limbo Lake, the album is more mature and more complex.
Some songs, such as ASCE, come across as generically derivative of indie rock and uninspired. However, most songs are engaging and thoughtful, drawing from world, R&B and motown rhythms that propel lush vocals, hammering out easily digestible choruses.
For the Seabellies, Fever Belle is a success, consolidating and expanding on their previous release.
_ SHAUN COWE