Great Balancing Act Dream

My first encounter with the Great Balancing Act was seeing them play live back in their very early days. It was a rather unusual performance because they used paintings to introduce many of their songs. Plus, there was lots of funny little songs with exotic beats about bikes called Pee Wee and the like. It was very entertaining and I have watched their careers (from a distance) with interest. Dream is their second proper album (although they have a few EPs under their belts) and it doesn't offer too many surprises. But now that the band has undergone several personnel changes, they are able to add five-part harmonies to the songs - a subtle change, but noticeable nevertheless. They've got the quirkiness under control, too - it was one of the things that helped them stand out, so they could actually lose ground because of this new found normality. They haven't checked the level of funkiness, though - if anything, their latest line-up has made their sound even more eclectic and varied. Dream is a rather enjoyable album that seamlessly mixes influences to come up with shamelessly upbeat, positive music. (Independent)