Clap Your Hands Say Yeah: Only Run (Self-Released) Review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Clap Your Hands Say Yeah

Only Run


Aug 25, 2014 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

With three albums’ worth of experience under their belt, Philadelphia’s Clap Your Hands Say Yeah‘s fourth album sees the band finally confident enough to truly expand their sound into the stratosphere. While previous records have mostly stuck to the classic indie rock format, never straying too far from acoustic and electric guitar, Only Run dives headlong into the shimmering world of the synth. This works with almost startling success, Alec Ounsworth and friends sounding more determined and self-assured than ever before.

This seemingly new discovery of the synth and all the sonic pleasures that accompany it is what defines the new record, giving it a constant glistening electronic sheen. Opener “As Always” reaches high and gets there, maintaining altitude for the duration of the 10 tracks. Cascading guitar lines fall against a gleaming synthesised backdrop, Ounsworth’s voice somehow finding the contemplative middle ground between Thom Yorke and Bono.

Perhaps as a by-product of the new instrumentation, Only Run sounds decidedly futuristic. The title track opens with a robotic female voice, while the rest of the song is scattered with what seem to be laser sound effects. “Beyond Illusion” is another forward-looking high point and possibly the band’s most electronic moment to date. It’s indie-gone-electro in a very Postal Service way, hiding a childlike innocence in the tone of the synths. This notable progression with each release makes Only Run Clap Your Hands Say Yeah’s most atmospherically accomplished album to date, boding well for the future of a band who could quite easily have stayed stuck in the mid-noughties indie rut. (

Author rating: 7.5/10

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Average reader rating: 8/10


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