Love Inks are an inconspicuous indie pop group from Texas who have recently released their debut album E.S.P. They have been compared to the band the xx in recent times, which I believe to be a fair comparison as their style of music conveys much similarity in terms of minimalism and its laid-back attitude. Love Inks, however, are a much fluffier affair than the dark pop of the xx; E.S.P. is beautifully woozy dream-pop.
When I first heard the single ‘Blackeye’ I wasn’t too convinced regarding as to whether I found their music particularly stimulating. However, after listening to it a few more times over, I discovered that it does have a certain impact, as the repetitive lyrics and melodies stick in your mind like indie-ustrial strength superglue and suddenly you find yourself singing along. The cyclical lyrics “you have black eye on your eye” may not inspire a deep and powerful meaning, but it leaves your imagination to wander elsewhere within the track. ‘Blackeye’ is my favourite track in the album purely due to its admirable minimalism.
From this album, you can expect simplistic, yet effective melodies from the bass and electric guitar, straightforward rhythm and good tempos from a vintage drum machine and the unique and emotional vocals of Sherry LeBlanc. Together these complement each other perfectly and are the ingredients needed for an inimitable and distinctive band. Each song featured in the album, portrays different emotion; from melancholy feelings in ‘Skeleton Key’ to dreamy procrastination in ‘Down And Out’.
Vocalist Sherry LeBlanc wrote, “The album reflects a time and place for everyone in the band. A time to pare down to what is necessary, essential. Cut out complexity, and you’ll find a deeper layer that is thicker and stronger.” E.S.P. certainly draws strength out of its simplicity, something a lot of other upcoming indie bands are now trying to emulate.
Their album incorporates a great flow of sentiments which can be heard and felt in each individual song, showing that their ability and skill is within composing uncomplicated yet catchy music. I hope that Love Inks will soon be recognized by a wider audience for their beautifully simple approach to creating music, however despite E.S.P. being full of wonderful sentiment and an admirable disregard for complexity, it is that same lack of playful adventure which may lead to them failing to standout.
Released on 2nd May 2011 by Hell Yes! Recordings