Wings Of Desire the indie-pop duo of James Taylor and Chloe Little have returned with their second EP of the year. Following on from their End Of An Age EP that focused on observing the world, Amun-Ra takes a look inwards and examines life and the expectations that comes with it. The duo formed over a mutual love of Krautrock, Berlin-era Bowie and 60’s counter-culture and you can feel aspects of each of these sewn in throughout this new EP.
Opener “Choose A Life” combines soaring soundscapes and sailing guitars to soundtrack the band’s satirical spoken word life-goal checklist. Imagine Arcade Fire wrote the soundtrack to Trainspotting with Wolf Alice on production duties. It’s one of those feel-good, contemplation tracks, perfect for watching the world pass by on the bus to work as you contemplate whether the commute is really worth it. You can lose yourself in the world that they create as they examine their place in the real one. There’s a certain magic they tap into on this track that they never quite reach on the rest of the EP.
“Better Late Then Never” rings with the same contemplative energy but only captures half of the excitement of its predecessor, almost trying to live off its legacy. They try to invoke the anthemic chorus aesthetics of Bowie’s Heroes, but only quite pull of being the trusty sidekicks. The chorus “Oohs” and defiant claims of “We’re just getting older” feel like you’re reading an inspirational post your aunt has shared on Facebook. The sentiments nice but the execution never really reaches the heights it could.
There is a comeback however on “Outtamamind” as they use allow the chorus’ anthemic nature to shine through and the power-rock guitars to create a motion to stomp your feet to. Their assessment on true timelines continue as they question whether mysteries like the Mandela affect and parallel universes really exist and how many lives we’ve live within them. The open-ended nature of these ponderings allows the band to place the question to everyone else; well what do you make of it?
What Wings Of Desire showcase on this EP is a pallet of sounds that becomes tried and true. Closer “Forgive And Forget” pulls these sounds together for one last power ballad outcry. It’s emotive and captivating and could easily soundtrack any indie-movie’s coming of age moment. But as with many movie moments they are only brief, needing only a snippet of a track and this track seems to provide this snippet in abundance. Its chorus reaching out for as long as it can, never seeming to want to let go. You are drawn in by the emotive moments of this EP and they stick around for as long as possible, occasionally bordering on the clingy.
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