South | Adventures in the Underground Journey to the Stars (Young American)

Listening to bands like South will make you feel smart.

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Listening to bands like South makes me feel smart. This London trio makes music that is both sophisticated and hip, mellow and inspiring. The follow up to 2003’s stunning With the Tides, Adventures in the Underground Journey to the Stars marks the band’s debut on the brand new Young American Recordings. It’s also their first foray into producing their own material, breaking free of old constraints.

“Shallow” opens the disc, a song that is anything but. Singer Joel Cadbury is in fine form, his whisper-gentle voice urging, “Give in to love, it’s the one thing we have” as, behind him, his collaborators Jamie McDonald and Brett Shaw create an indie rock symphony of guitar, keyboards, and drums. At turns, Adventures is almost ’70s in its ethereal stylings, Cadbury’s voice blending nicely at times with McDonald’s or a guest female vocalist. “Don’t take yourself so seriously,” South proclaims on “You Are One.” It’s a soothing release, enlightening without agitating. Nice stuff, indeed.


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