Album Review: The Winter Passing – New Ways Of Living

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The Winter Passing

New Ways Of Living - Big Scary Monsters / Counter Intuitive

‘New Ways of Living’, the second album from Dubliners The Winter Passing, dropped at the start of the month via Big Scary Monsters (UK) and Counter Intuitive Records (US). Formed by brother and sister Rob and Kate Flynn, and guitarist Jamie Collison in their hometown of Tipperary;  the band have become known for their fiery DIY work ethic, pressing their own records and tapes and booking their own shows across the world. After 2017’s ‘Double Exposure’ EP, the five-piece pop-noisesters have developed their songwriting approaches to encompass their many influences, and create “a sound bigger, brighter and more ambitious than ever before.”



The album opens with the solid, blocky chords of ‘Ghost Thing’.  There’s some lovely vocal interplay, which continues into a chorus bursting with layers of guitar work.  “What’s wrong with me?” the siblings enquire, in glorious harmony. ‘The Street and The Stanger’ is built around tessellating, spiralling arpeggios, and showcases some of the dynamics at play throughout the whole album, including a brief spoken-word fragment. Latest single, ‘Melt’, cruises by with self-aware cool: “If I’m not careful, one day I might get what I want’; and couples up nicely with the laid-back punk vibes of ‘New York’. The next track, ‘Crybaby’, almost comes from leftfield with its playground gang vocals, exotic-leaning bass pulses and guitar twinkles – but retains the sparkle and shimmer of the album’s pop-glow aesthetic. ‘Greetings from Tipperary’ is an accented ode to Irish roots, conceived through stripped-down shoegaze-folk. It’s beautiful. ‘Resist’, a previous single, makes use of space in its floating verses to collide with its weighty chorus, followed by another euphoric chorus in ‘Something to Come Home To’, culminating in a swelling wig-out. The low-key shimmer of ‘I Want You’ serves as a gateway to the album’s end; its haunting vocal line, backed by reverb-drenched guitars, segues into the echoic chamber of closer ‘Mind Yourself’ – which, across its nearly 7 minutes, passes through flickering notes into a wall of sound; a chiming build-up into an explosion of rapturous clamour; and finally, breathlessly, a warming acoustic outro.

Like vibrant, crafted tunes with an indie-cool edge? ‘New Ways of Living’ is available to stream/buy HERE. The band has Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages to follow.