Cub Sport: Bats

- Bats, the second full length from Brisbane band Cub Sport, is a thirteen track work of chill synth vibes, improved musicality, catchy pop tunes and heart breaking vulnerability. Whilst their debut was a fun delivery of angst ridden pop bangers, Cub Sport has taken a more relaxed approach to their second full length. a

Opening track Chasin' packs the same intensity in the vocals and melodies as some of their earlier work, but the subtle harmonies and auxiliary percussion creates a more relaxed feel – the shimmery pop touch is more prevalent rather than the angst driven ballads of This Is Our Vice. That’s not to say this record is missing Cub Sport's signature angsty pop ballads. Let U Be has minute seconds of pensive silence in between vocal refrains that quiver and pulse alongside the laidback synth and drum tracks. Title track Bats is a little fast paced to be called a ballad, but is still laden with the same tones of vulnerability and uncertainty that reverberate across the whole record.

With its gospel influence and religious undertones, O Lord has become a queer staple, the band's ‘coming out’ track. For an outfit like Cub Sport to include a track of this flavour on their otherwise reasonably chill record is a double-edged sword, although they've been swingng it in their favour so far. It could have been taken in the wrong way and stuck out like a sore thumb, but instead it captures the essence of what they do in less than four minutes. It also has some of the best vocals of the record – lead singer Tim Nelson’s voice has a fragility to it that sends shivers down your spine. 

A little sadder than their debut (but come on, did you listen to Come on Mess Me Up? You knew what you were in for), so if you’re after some party bangers this record is probably not for you. What Bats has is much more important and touching than a twelve track pop record has a right to be – it goes to the places that pop music doesn’t usually go – into the depths of your heart and into all those little hidden caves of loss and heartbreak you don’t usually visit. A touching effort from Cub Sport. 

- Olivia Shoesmith.

Album Details

Album Title: Bats
Artist: Cub Sport
Record Label: (Indie)