Album review – It Takes Two by Salt Lake Alley (2022) (Shelflife Records)


It Takes Two is the second album from the Salt Lake Alley project of Gustav Tranback (Paper Hearts, Dismal Plight) and Mikael Carlsson (The Honeydrips, Dorotea) and continues their propensity to celebrate all manner of jangle-pop nuances.
Consistently shrouded in the slightest of fuzz laden under production and surrounded by the programmed drum machines of the 80s, this Stockholm based duo imbue subtle modernity into the best of the familairity of yesteryear.
At the albums most dynamic, I Never Thought, Morning Say Hello and Merry Go Around take The Bravery style vocal bombast and course it through Bloc Party style angular riffs.
This sense of mid 2000’s is then rounded off by a definitive post-punk meets new wave glaze, that drags everything back to the 80s. All the tracks thrill in the way that positive energy is usually addictive.
However, the best of this amazing album is seen when the dynamism diminishes and the jangled riffs and melodies are allowed more opportunity to gather momentum.
Here No Limits and Down take the lucid, shining riffs, of their Stephens Shore countrymen and just muddy the waters enough to make the sound defiantly ‘theirs’, whereas I’m Always Near and I Can Wait Forever are absolutely everything so perfectly,  jangly guitar-pop from the late 80 / early 90’s, anglo guitar-pop scene.
In the last couple of weeks 2022’s jangle-pop releases have come to life and Salt Lake Alley seem intent on carrying the flag.


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