It seems to have taken an eternity for The History Of Apple Pie to release their first full length album. It is easy to forget the fashion they abruptly appeared and were quickly labelled “ones-to-watch”, all before East London peers Toy even existed.
At the beginning of 2012 they were hotly tipped for big success, but instead of rushing a full length release they honed in on their craft. It is refreshing to see this at a time when buzz bands appear left, right and centre, all rushing to release an album whilst they are still in the spotlight. Taking the slower approach seems to be paying off for THOAP as they show they have mastered their melodic ’90s shoegaze sound.
There is no stopping the boom in ’90s revivalist bands, as guitarists search past their fringes down to their pedals to create blasts of distortion in gritty and grimy venues across the country. However very few of these bands possess the ability to really captivate their audiences, as their statements get drowned out by overpowering layers of noise. This is precisely what THOAP have learnt with their scuzzy guitar riffs bubbling in the background, whilst Steph Min’s sweet vocals take centre stage.
Out Of View is the result of 18 months spent carefully perfecting their art and will mark the moment they step away from being a hyped new band. The 10 tracks that feature on the album leave you with a woozily joyous feeling – not to dissimilar from seeing an ice cream van at a young age, just like the cover artwork. The London five-piece owe a lot to co-producer Joshua Hayward as feedback drenched guitar riffs sound similar to The Horrors’ trademark style – particularly during I Want More, with its mesmerising guitars.
Instantly THOAP hit their stride with Tug, a perfect demonstration of how to balance melody and noise with the product being a slice of irresistible lo-fi pop. The next serving the band delivers is latest single See You, an obvious choice to lead the album promotion. Steph Mi whispers her vocals in a bubblegum rock style, which sound as if they have been sugar coated in honey as the track leads up to a monumental chorus. One of the greatest faults of noise rock in previous years has been the inability to stir emotive listens, but THOAP successfully achieve this as their single leaves the listener with a nostalgic feeling.
Amongst all the sweetness there are instances where they perfectly capture their live spirit with the energetic riffs that feature in Do It Wrong, echoing their louder influences such as Dinosaur Jr. The fiery nature of the track is full of punk angst that rivals any grunge revivalist for sheer volume and power. Before You Reach The End brings the album to a fitting close incorporating all their best components of scuzz, shoegaze, twee and noise-pop with the album fading away with the same distorted guitar effects that brought the album to life.
Although there are no surprises on the album, given most of the tracks have been released in some form or another during THOAP’s existence to date, it does make for an excellent collection of songs that best represent the band’s career thus far. Out Of View has proved that they are one of the elites in the ’90s revivalists pack because of their ability to add invigorating twists to their influences. You don’t often have to wait as long for debut albums, but by taking their time and perfecting their first full length release, THOAP have created something truly memorable.