How apropos that UK five-piece Racing Glaciers put out a track while our country gets sucked into a polar vortex. But contradictory to their name, “cold” is the last word we would use to describe their latest offering, “New Country” – a bursting ballad that crackles like a bonfire and will warm your soul.
No slow burning kindle intro here – the song blazes into the scene with furiously fluttering flutes, simple keystrokes striking out the melody, and a drumroll that could be the apex of any other song. And this is only 10 seconds in. We realize it’s just the tip of the iceberg because when lead vox Tim Monaghan enters the scene, we’re already committed to the cause and sinking into the song’s subharmonic sea. Just before two minutes, everything stops except the sturdy synth that acts as the lifeline, pulsing out the beat. At 2:30 it’s an avalanche of instruments, electric guitar sliding the track forward until we’re no longer racing, but just floating amidst the glaciers.
The track’s intensity and glowing warmth echo a style unique to some of my favorite tracks, namely Nashville duo SHIROCK’s “Still Young” and Magic Man’s “Waves.” Thematically, the song is about moving forward, the lyrics “I’ve been sitting on my hands / I’ve been coasting on this tide too long” attesting to complacency, and the need to be jolted from normality every now and again. Sometimes this jolt comes in the form of 0 degree weather, and sometimes it takes shape in the form of a slap-in-the-face song – an undeniable work of genius that wakes us up, warms us up, and singlehandedly makes us respect these five guys from Liverpool.
"New Country" is the first track off their second EP Ahead of you Forever (out February 2) that you can preorder here.