Queer DIY punks Suggested Friends have returned with second album, ‘Turtle Taxi’. The band describe themselves as a ‘small choir of mostly lesbians’ and this song promises the same kind of power-pop melodies and important cultural messages as on their self-titled debut.
A blast of feedback and some frantic drumming signals the start of the album opener ‘Imminent’ – a folky indie-pop song that sounds somewhat akin to Grace Petrie fronting The Spook School as Faith Taylor ponders what love looked like at an earlier age and how they’re enjoying being ‘invested in your imminent demise’. ‘Cygnets’ follows with a nostalgix mixture of melodies and metaphor as Faith sings: ‘Try as I might, I don’t know what to think of this fluctuating trust’ and draws a comparison for the situation to ‘another stingray trapped in a fish tank’. Following this is the brilliantly titled ‘The Apocalypse (It’s Just a Day Away)’ with its potent riffs, cowbells and chamber pop leanings: ‘There’s no more bitterness, I’ll keep the curtains drawn’. Faith also delivers the words ‘Please wake the fuck up’ with surprising tenderness.
‘G.N.A’ is a slow-burner about how ‘life’s always on autocorrect’. There’s a new wave feeling (complete with duelling guitars) in the instrumentation as Faith tackles the problems in society that young people are facing: ‘The rent’s too high, the room’s too small’. ‘At Ease’ is another song that tackles the harsh realities of life compared to fantasies and how this can affect your mental well-being: ‘I used to be so bold. I’m such a mess this time’. However, they soon turn these melancholic thoughts into something far more positive as they praise how others’ love and support can make such a huge difference: ‘If you love me like I do, maybe there’s not much wrong with me’. The title track has a killer bass line and a chorus Happy Accidents would be proud to call their own while the (again, superbly titled) ‘Pretty Soon Your Grave Will be a Landfill’ is more boisterous as the band again rally against how young people are treated and the fact we’ll all be working until we’re 85: ‘I’m funding your retirement on my tiny monthly wage. You said you had a house and car at my age’.
As the album reaches its final throes, the band tone things down a little on ‘Blooms’ and then venture into a more dreamy Orielles-esque soundscape on ‘For Jokes’. The closing ‘Magnolia’ finds Suggested Friends heading somewhere more soulful, although the sadness still remains intact: ‘I’ll never let you squeeze my hand’. On their second album, Suggested Friends have again tackled important issues with wit and wondrous melodies. You’ll want to take a ride in this particular Turtle Taxi…
Suggested Friends are:
- Faith Taylor – guitar and vocals
- Emma Kupa – bass
- Christabel Williams – drums
- Jack McGinn – guitar