To end off the year, Leeds band Team Picture emerge once more from deep within a genre pick ’n’ mix bag, of lo-fi white noise laden guitars, tranquil vocals, thick synthesis and math rock riffs. ‘Potpourri Headache’ is an exemplary performance of genre-mixing, starting with an atmospheric standstill, where nothing moves nor breathes. Nothing but a malfunctioning 60’s TV that occasionally cries out with white noise. But this is a decoy.
A sweet, finger picked guitar line enters the fold creating a languid feel, simultaneously high breathy vocals croon in the background. The verses create a smooth on-going progression of time, no disturbances just bright tones. But once the chorus kicks in, the drums and guitars interact in a riff partnership that brings you to your knees, as the soundscape begins to writhe and twist, hitting rocks and debris in it’s path. We are just the feeble fish being thrown under the waves. Your brain scrambles for answers and the vocals give them – it’s a ‘Potpourri Headache’.
A lyric that perfectly describes the disorientation, but is sung in such a syrupy tone that it acts as relief, not disruption. Although the only reason for such a head pain in this context would be through its mind blowing power. The riff is heavy but in a Radiohead, Alt-J synth smothered way and the vocals are a perfect combination of Daughter and London Grammar.
As we near the final sections, we leap into liberation with an uplifting timbre and uncontrollable sense of freedom. The guitars rise and fall in intricate finger picking and the drums shift dynamics to cymbals, opening up the space for synths and vocals to crescendo and dive into a drone with the guitars. Ending all too soon, ‘Potpourri Headache’ fades out with a return to the minimalism of the introduction, effects-speckled guitars and synth wash clean the palette and we are cleansed.
Team Picture’s ‘Potpourri Headache’ is available on iTunes and Spotify now.