“What Is A Life” Without Third Lung?

Hailing from the land of Reading, England, Third Lung have very quickly established themselves as an indie rock band to be reckoned with. With a powerful band dynamic on their latest track “What Is A Life” they have pushed the boundaries of indie rock to limits I haven’t heard in the genre in many moons. I’ve often thought that modern indie rock was getting stale, yet every time I think it is counted out, it manages to flare up somewhere else, such is the case here with Third Lung.

Taking influence from Motown, jazz, and funk, yet still sticking true to the loud guitars and catchy vocal hooks present throughout indie rock. Yet even with these influences, the band takes on a fifth element beyond just the four members. Together they create a larger than life sound reminiscent of U2’s “Where the Streets Have No Name” or for a more modern example, Nothing But Thieves’ “Excuse Me”.

This is largely thanks to the enchanting performance of Tom Farrelly, on vocal and rhythm guitar duty. The vocals have all the power of the classic rock greats, yet maintains an effervescent, haunting quality that keeps the listener entranced. I also really like the use of the backing vocals and delayed guitar, really adding some girth to the sound. The rhythm section does its job well, and I like some of the funk and Motown inspired moments throughout the drum track, but I feel the bass could perhaps be a bit more defined.

The minimal use of bass is one of the few aspects of the production and song-writing I can fault. I do also feel myself getting a bit bored during the later verses, perhaps shortening them during the latter half of the track could have been a better idea, but I do manage to stay engaged. I can imagine the current length would work well live, but as I keep telling bands, studio versions and live versions are allowed to be different!

One thing I absolutely love about this song is the subtle backing instrumentation. Strings, keys, and synths all going in different directions really keep things wonderfully interesting. I’m glad to see an indie rock band experimenting with themes outside the norm. I get sent multiple indie rock bands every single week and this is one of the few I have decided to review thanks to their originality. I urge the band to continue this trend and become not just another indie band, but rock stars to rival the greats themselves.

All in all I can heartily recommend Third Lung to people who like myself, are looking for the next step in modern rock music. So many bands fail to achieve what Third Lung have, and I can honestly say that I will follow their progress and wish them luck in their future endeavours, musical or otherwise.

Peace, Love and Cowbells,


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