It has been a long journey for Anteros. When We Land delivers magnificently on the new material front, whilst giving a revamped splash of colour to familiar tracks.
The bass-line on ‘Ring Ring’ now has a wonderful wah-wah moan and groan, with synths trickling nicely over the top. This leads perfectly into ‘Call Your Mother’ – a fantastic tune with hints of Blondie’s ‘Union City Blues’. What is immediately obvious about this album is that it’s an honest reflection of the band. It has a welcoming feeling with the title alluding to shared sense of arrival. The tight production on show elevates a band that already has stratospheric potential.
New track ‘Honey’ demonstrates the range in Lauren Hayden’s voice, as she talks her way through the verses before hitting you with the punching: “I’m a fool for you, fool for you, fool for you, fool for you honey”. At this point on the record, you realise that each track roots itself within you.
‘Afterglow’ takes the band to the next echelon. Harry Balazs’ epic slamming on drums bring a level of drama they haven’t reached before. Meanwhile, Jackson Couzens’ marauding guitar and the ‘ooh-ah-ah’ of the backing vocals create a texture of intensity. This heightened presence is also created on ‘Let It Out’ – a song tailor-made for Hayden’s theatrical performance, echoing the sounds and key influence of Fleetwood Mac.
In the mid-section of this album, the strongest of Anteros can be found. ‘Drive On’ is a slice of effortless cool that has an infectious smoothness, which builds excitingly to anthem status.
With ‘Breakfast’, perhaps Anteros’ best-known track to date, we are treated with to another refurbished track. This time, guitars are brought to the forefront, with distortion taken a notch higher and Hayden’s “why don’t you take me out for breakfast” dropped in with an impossible-to-ignore grittiness. It feels like a new song, just with the same lyrics given a renewed feeling, packaged in a fiercer outfit.
‘Ordinary Girl’ is also given a dramatic facelift – Hayden’s chorus coming with backing vocals and a string section that echo her voice and accentuates the emotion of “it’s not an ordinary world and you ‘re not an ordinary girl“. On ‘Wrong Side’, they explore a sound harking back to 70s pop. The chorus has a disco-inspired bounce coming from a hi-hat fizzing throughout. Similar styling can be heard on ‘Fool Moon’, which is the catchiest song on offer.
The eponymous track at the end of this defining debut album is a natural track to end on. ‘Anteros’ tugs at the heartstrings. Slow verses keep building and arrive at a sense of stillness of “could this be the first part of the last start?“. Here is a song from a band that have earned their stripes, established a place where they comfortably belong and look to a huge future.
After years of touring and gigging, building a fan-base, Anteros have pieced together an astonishing debut album. Clear influences of 70s rock and disco perforate each corner, whilst they drop in their own signatures of theatric flecks and thought-provoking lyricisms. The full spectrum of emotions can be felt from songs that will make you want to forget your surroundings and dance around a room, to tracks that will make you stand still and reflect. It will make the heart pump and the soul come alive.
Anteros release their much-awaited debut album, When We Land, on March 22, via Distiller Records.