Huddle All These Fires

Huddle All These Fires
"Islands," the first blast of indie pop from Toronto, ON group Huddle, was stunning in both its succinctness and ability to burrow into your ears for days on end. Nothing on the band's debut matches the two minutes of bliss of its leadoff track, but none try and the record is all the better for it. Blending a host of turn-of-the-century indie rock acts, no two tracks on All These Fires sound like a rehash of another. Instead of leaning on a sonic bag of tricks, the group focus on hooks, milking each of these ten tunes for all they're worth, which is a lot. Coming hot on the heels of "Islands," "Sleepwalker" uses Sea & Cake-like instrumental precision to craft the soundtrack to a time-lapsed construction video. Meanwhile, "Dark Times" uses the rough-hewn edges and vocal bombast of early Modest Mouse to create a slow-burning anthem. All These Fires is a rare album where the band put the songs first. The result is a release that's immediate in its catchiness, but rewards repeated listens due to its complexities. (Independent)