Streamlining their post-rock sound, Sydney Australia’s Solkyri delivers a distinct, vibrant energy and an uninhibited immediacy that engages instantly with the listener. Mount Pleasant is the bold follow up to their strongly received 2015 album Sad Boys Club, upping the ante and wasting no time in making its presence felt with a trio of tracks that refuse to be held back. Approaching the genre with more traditional rock sensibilities lends a gripping quality to the compositions, while at the same time seeing the band to explore more textured and tender sounds as the record progresses. It’s this gradually unfolding assemblage of varying tone colors that gives the record its richness and depth, a vital quality that maintains the balance between the inherent forcefulness and the underlying emotional resonance integral to its success with listeners.
In spite of the cheerful and buoyant title, Mount Pleasant instantly surges from the speakers with a trio of tracks that deliver a dynamic interplay of driving guitars and assertive percussion surging back and forth with one another in a perfect storm. It’s a breathless display of aggression, groove and conviction that leaves no doubt as to the pedigree of the musicianship running throughout the record. The second and third tracks effectively highlight the ways in which Solkyri can approach contrasting feelings with unwavering energy. “Potemkin” is an angry and confrontational song that addresses deceit and disillusion, while lead single “Pendock & Progress” traverses more poignant and warm terrain yet maintains a steady level of passion and sincerity.
As the record moves into its middle section Solkyri engages a lighter, dreamier mood, introducing Rhodes piano in “Meet Me In The Meadow,” which plays directly into the more delicate of the two singles, “Shambles,” a track which ultimately finds its way back to the more direct and explosive tendencies of Mount Pleasant’s opening act. By the time the album-closing “Gueules Cassées” announces itself, the band has shown it has held nothing back. Solkyri deftly moves through a wide range of moods and colors, pushing themselves to new frontiers and riding wave upon wave of pulsing riffs and soaring melodies to its triumphant resolution. Well-rounded and consistently alluring, Mount Pleasant needs to be a priority item for any post-rock fan’s essential listening list in 2020.