In ‘Out To Sea’ Carlton Melton have produced one of my favourite albums of the year so far. I think that it is their most complete work to date, being more focused than previous outings, yet without losing that looseness and improvisation that marks out their sound for me. It is an album that can still take you on the most epic of journeys. It finds its groove straight away, with ‘Peaking Duck’, and really does not let you go until the final chord of ‘Realms’. ‘Out To Sea’ is an amazing album for me because I found it to be immediate. Yet these initial impressions were but the foundations on which the band have built something more sonically massive for me. In this sense the album is well named, we can view the beauty of the sea from the shore, but we only really feel the awe of its power once we are on it.

The next step, of course, is to experience it live; which is why staying up until 1am on Saturday morning was a no-brainer to see the set on the Camp stage. I am very glad that I did because Carlton Melton delivered a set that initially enrobed me in my tiredness but then, when Andy Duvall moved from guitar to drums, hit me with a sonic blast that kept me going and kept me moving for the rest of the nearly hour-long set. It was great how the band broke me through that haze and sent me, and I am sure, the vast majority of the sizeable late night crowd, away in just the right frame of mind to reflect on a varied and interesting first day, and hungry for more on the Saturday.

You can find my other writing for Backseat Mafia here, including reports from this year’s Liverpool PsychFest.

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