The drive and speed with which Sports Team broke into the music scene surprised everyone and could not go unnoticed. Despite the global pandemic, the band’s debut album Deep Down Happy generated a lot of buzz, received great reviews, a Mercury Prize nomination, and also peaked at number 2 on the UK Official Charts Company albums chart (they lost first place to Lady Gaga’s Chromatica).
With such a crazy start, it’s easy to imagine that releasing a second album was quite a challenge for the group. Unfortunately, maintaining such a level of hype is close to impossible, and the same might apply to charts/general reviews. However, we are not really interested in that. What is important, the band really managed to gather a truly dedicated fan base around them. And Gulp! won’t disappoint those.
On the new LP sextet is even more chaotic, but now they don’t even try to make the sound clean or polished. The album is filled with loud, noisy distortion, wild guitars, and, as usual, vocalist Alex Rice’s firm manic delivery.
No matter how “uncool” indie rock is in 2022, Sports Team are excellent representatives of the genre. Gulp! sounds like Spector on speed, like the more obsessive and controlled Palma Violets, like The Libertines without too much drama. It’s definitely not a groundbreaking release, not an album of the year, but it is very catchy and super, super fun.
Check it out below and purchase the LP here.