Aside from Maguire’s versatile, if patchy vocals, the music of Stranger Things Have Happened is arranged around piano and/or guitar parts, and it is because of this that the inconsistent qualities of the compositions get thrown into sharp relief; stronger compositions sit alongside weaker one, or compelling musical phrases are counterpointed by clichéd riffs within the one song. Titular song, Stranger Things Have Happened, features a grating, limply strummed, autoharp, which matches the high and hollow vocal delivery, and a string section is dragooned into the mix in an attempt to add gravitas. The Valley – which is strongly reminiscent of Feist’s 1234 – features one of the strongest vocal performances of the album, yet the production process hasn’t adequately captured them.
This is an extract from a review originally published on the 5th June 2016. Please visit Renowned For Sound to read the full review.