Gintis: Hope Is All We Have (Mai 68 Records)

Slow burning psych / chamber pop platter from North Wales stalwarts, their first in over a decade

Released May 27th, 2022 via Mai 68 Records / By Richard Lewis
Gintis: Hope Is All We Have (Mai 68 Records) Their first album in eleven years, the third long player by many limbed psych pop outfit Gintis is a restatement of principles. Denizens of North Wales (Requiem for SC2 is presumably named after the leisure park in Rhyl), the octet's spliffed up melodicism shares a lineage with antecedents like Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci, Sweet Baboo and the present day likes of El Goodo.

Drawn back together through family tragedy and a set of incomplete songs “burning a hole in their hard drive”, while musically the band might suggest a gentle, world weary melancholy cf: Sentimental Song For Sad Song Singers, as the title of the set underlines, Hope Is All We Have is suffused with an upbeat optimism. Led by Carl Roberts’ plaintive vocals, the band's combination of brass, keys and synth drones recalls late 1990s / early 2000s US alt. rock titans Grandaddy and Mercury Rev with perhaps a smidgen of Kosmische rhythmic underpinning.

Sumptuously arranged by the group and producer Bill Ryder-Jones, the shift from Pavement-esque indie to chamber pop on the superbly titled Oh My Little Malcontent and character study Dennis showcases the group’s grasp of dynamics. Dialling up the tempos, fuzzy guitar missives A Snooze In The Afternoon and You’re The One I’m Keen On dovetail nicely with the delicate piano-led These Demons.

Ideal summer listening (weather permitting), Hope... is a grower whose charms emerge over repeated listens. Fans of the aforementioned luminaries and the contemporary likes of Mac DeMarco will find much to savour here. 4/5