Cults: Offering (Sinderlyn) Review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Thursday, February 29th, 2024  




Nov 14, 2017 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Cults, the duo of Brian Oblivion and Madeline Follin, have made a winning combination of retro synth rock and hazy dream pop since their self-titled debut in 2011. Although releasing only two previous albums, their sound is both familiar and comfortable while only occasionally seeking the adventurous.

Offering is not much different. On the surface that may sound like a knock, but if you listen a little closer and dig a little deeper you’ll hear a sophisticated blend of electro-pop, indie-rock, and New Wave. Collectively, the 11 tracks form a well-produced indie-pop album consisting of light and airy synth-based melodies and breezy indie-guitar strums over polished bass lines. Cults do a good job of distilling their influences (The Motels, Hooverphonic, Masonic, Beach House) into original compositions with clever pop sensibilities.

Some may find it easy to pass up on this familiar and charming synth pop prescription since it doesn’t really break any new ground or chart new territory. But they would be missing the point and missing out on some sweet ear candy. Oblivion and Follin explore all angles of the genre with short hooks that are woven into blithe pop songs. Some bounce with an electro-pop sheen, others are slower and dreamier with a more washed-out synth vibe, and still others rock with some textured and frothy guitar leads or with energetic bursts of atmospheric and buzzy synths.

An added feature that tops it off is Follin’s sweet voice. Listeners will find it easy to form an emotional bond with the music as Follin coaxes it out of us with her charming, girl-next-door sexiness.

With its sweet, dream-pop sound, Offering is an immediately likable record that is enjoyable on first listen. Repeated plays make it more lovable as the subtle, ultra-cool textures creep into your consciousness and make for dynamic and vibrant tunes with honeyed vocals. I think I’ve found my new guilty pleasure. (

Author rating: 7/10

Rate this album
Average reader rating: 7/10


Submit your comment

Name Required

Email Required, will not be published


Remember my personal information
Notify me of follow-up comments?

Please enter the word you see in the image below:

There are no comments for this entry yet.