An album that peaks and troughs with pathos, Mirrors is the new one from Cattle & Cane, siblings, Joe and Helen Hammill, which infectiously affects the most hardened with their soaring harmonies and stunning vocals. Packed with poetic lyrics and finger-picked guitars, their sophomore album will widen their presence.
Very much a family affair, Joe and Helen are joined by their brothers Fran (keyboards & backing vocals) and Vin Hammill (bass), along with their close friendTom Chapman on drums. Produced by Luuk Cox at ICP Studios in Brussels and Temple Studios in Malta, and mastered by Frank Arkwright ( who has previously worked with Arcade Fire, Coldplay and New Order to name a few) at Abbey Road Studios in London, Mirrors classically features ten songs that effortlessly showcase Cattle & Cane’s versatility between the summer pop hit to the more melodic, anthemic reflection.
Beginning with raw vocal-led harmonies, Love on Your Hands is a great opener on the record, putting Helen’s beautiful vocal chords on display, before she lends her style to the prolific Alison Goldfrapp with Make Your Vision, a synthesized, entertaining pop song that changes the pace of the album half way through. Joe is also clearly more than capable of leading a snappy, rhythmic pop track, as 7 Hours highlights. With Fool For You, we are given a taste of the summer and hint of optimism with this track, which perhaps lends itself too much to the formula for commercial success, reminiscent of Of Monsters and Men and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros.
Dealing with the Devil darkens the record, with a repetitive, low chord and an element of haunting din. Fading out the track with “they don’t understand” this adds a new dimension to Mirrors than none of the previous tracks prepares us for, before the poignant, folky, Time to Get It Over With kicks in. Paper Man, similarly to Time To Get It Over With, demonstrates the skill in acoustic guitar on this record and Saviour cements Helen’s vocals in adding a richness to this timeless record.
And concluding with the weighted I’ve Been Silent and Tonight We Dance (Cleveland) the album shifts to a more reflective sound before finishing, indicative of an album compiled with much thought and consideration. More contemporary than their previous with Helen pushed to the spotlight, Mirrors should get a receptive audience and we look forward to attending their live shows.
Mirrors is released on Friday April 28th on Pledge Music and to find out more on the band’s live dates click here.