It's easy to see why Noel Gallagher wanted Richard Warren, aka Echoboy, to join Oasis. Echoboy's love of sounds, both experimental and pop, are evident throughout Volume One.
"55" and "Model 352" are the work of a sound chemist, the first song a dark, percolating dirge, the latter a noisy, cluttered track awash in all sorts of sound effects. "Kit and Holly" displays the pop side of Echoboy's interests, sounding like a long lost classic from Echo & the Bunnymen, or Love and Rockets finally getting its electronic post-Earth, Sun, Moon wanderings right. When compared to the rest of the album, "Walking" is another somewhat traditional song; it ends before it really gets going, but does display fine pop musicianship and the fragile, pretty vocals of Tasha Lee McLuney. You'd think that there's an entire album's worth of similar pop gems in Echoboy's head, but the album leans toward his more experimental interests. That's not to say that songs like "Broken Hearts" aren't beautiful and accessible in their own right. Perhaps that's the heart of Echoboy; he mixes equal amounts of ambient shoegazing loveliness, dollops of pop charm, and some truly fierce electronic experimentation.
This really isn't an album for the casual listener; the squalls that develop out of gentle ambience on "Constantinople" will perhaps turn off listeners drawn in by "Kit and Holly." One thing that's quite evident is that Volume One isn't made for fans of any one particular genre of music or even for listeners at all; the album is the sound of Echoboy exploring his own interests and making uncompromising modern music. It's certainly an eclectic, winning ride, if a tiny bit unfocused.
|55 / Echoboy||Echoboy||4:34|
|Kit and Holly / Echoboy||Echoboy||5:04|
|Model 352 / Echoboy||Echoboy||6:16|
|Broken Hearts / Echoboy||Echoboy||5:10|
|Constantinople / Echoboy||Echoboy||9:35|
|Crocodile Milk / Echoboy||Echoboy||6:32|
|Walking / Echoboy||Echoboy||2:16|
|Contact / Echoboy||Echoboy||5:38|