INSTITUT POLAIRE – Make Your Own Mayflower
Buy him to not just complement the songs but take them to another level. Left alone, they’re nice, promising pieces of jangled pop but when coupled with the hook laden extra instrumentation however familiar, they become more complex and interesting affairs.
‘Leaving Her Shook’ follows a familiar pattern found in many Australian indie folk-pop songs, plucky guitar and percussive brushstrokes before unfolding with a duel between orchestration and guitar. First single and Indie30 chart maker, ‘Make Your Own Mayflower’ is disciplined and catchy, ‘Old Fashioned Affliction’ is an ode to the pop of the 60s, ‘We Can’t Wait No More’ increases the urgency, ‘To New Holland’ uses harmonies and brass to great effect while the horn work on ‘Mamonaku’ makes it a standout.
While Make Your Own Mayflower is not going to feature highly in any best of lists, there is enough to the album to suggest that Institut Polaire can build from a competent debut. Sure, it’s got its issues, mostly in the familiar structures that abound throughout, but the obvious musical talent of those involved suggests that with wider horizons and the employment of a little more creativity at the centre, the band can kick on to greater heights.
James Stocker, December 1, 2010.