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Music Review

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Artist: Balthazar
Label: PIAS
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 26 February 2021

PIAS release Sand, the new album from Balthazar. It represents a soulful alt-pop embrace albeit less encumbered from the melancholic shackles of the past, allowing the band to pursue a newfound road which highlights the nuances of love, loss and life...

Sand misses essential album purchase by a whisker. It opens promisingly with 'Moment', an indie pop track that really captures the imagination and there are moments of this brilliance that pepper the album, but then it seems to lose its way a little. This is a million miles away from 2015's Thin Walls. And while bands should strive to constantly reinvent themselves, I can't help feeling that Sand is a small step backwards. You can even hear that the group don't seem to be gelling as well and they certainly don't sound like they have the same confidence on some of the songs.

'Losers' is a wonderful '70s disco track reimagined for a modern audience. 'On a Roll' seems a little half finished. Other highlights include 'Hourglass', with its upbeat tempo, and the closing 'Powerless'.

I can't help feeling - even though on balance I enjoyed this album - that it could have been a little more polished and a little less... drab.


Nick Smithson

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