The Bats Free All The Monsters

The Bats Free All The Monsters
The Bats are all about consistency. Their line-up has stayed exactly the same during their 30 years together, which is reflected in their sound. Naturally, being an integral part of the Dunedin music scene (leader Robert Scott is also part of the Clean) has also had an impact, although their wonderfully lethargic rate of making records has ensured they've never gotten stale. Free All The Monsters is their eighth album and it's exactly what anybody who has heard the Bats before would expect. And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that at all. The songs have the requisite amount of jangly guitars, which appear mandatory for anything Flying Nun-related, plus there are also plenty of the vocal harmonies between Scott and guitarist Kaye Woodward that have always made their music so special. From the gentle title track to the glistening psychedelia of "Space Junk," there's nothing here that could be described as a surprise. What is surprising is that the Bats have made one of their finest albums as they start their fourth decade together. This is a great record. (Flying Nun)