5 Underrated Bombay Bicycle Club Songs
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Lovable indie four-piece Bombay Bicycle Club gained a huge following between 2009 and 2014, before the heart-breaking announcement of their extended break to pursue other projects.
With their sun-kissed sound and harmless indie charm, the band represent a golden period for British indie music, bringing about intense feelings of nostalgia. After releasing four albums in five years, the Oxford-based outfit seperated for other ventures. Each album excelled in its own right, carrying a sense of familiarity and warmth despite taking on a different style each time, like Flaws acoustic album and So Long, See You Tomorrow which took on a more experimental approach with completely new influences.
In a short but sweet career spanning 7 years, the indie boys stole the hearts of British teens and gained a huge loyal following. For these fans who want nothing more than Bombay Bicycle Club to return to the studio, here are five completely underrated tracks that may have slipped under the radar.
1) ‘Open House’, The Boy I Used to Be EP (2007)
In a debut EP featuring 4 tracks, ‘Open House’ was one of the two which never made a full length album. However, the song’s chirpy hooks alongside Jack Steadman’s gentle vocals exude vibes of 00s British indie music, reminiscent of The Strokes or early Courteeners. Where their sound developed so much before their extended hiatus, ‘Open House’ offers an endearing trip down memory lane for fans.
2) ‘How Are You’, How We Are EP (2007)
Later that same year the band released their second EP, titled How We Are. The title track follows a similar theme to ‘Open House’ with its pacey, British summer-time riffs, but Steadman’s vocals take on a more wistful tone, carrying an almost eerie sense of longing. It’s here we start to hear the foundations of the vocalist’s eventual unique drawl that came to prominence in the band’s later projects.
3) ‘What If’, I Had the Blues But I Shook Them Loose (2009)
“If only/one of us/had the guts tonight” Steadman chants in a thunderous chorus, vastly different to the band’s typically laidback style. The track appears to focus around a missed opportunity to talk to someone, but the song’s frantic nature gives it a much more energetic and vibrant tone to what fans are used to. In a debut album that saw tracks like ‘Always Like This’ and ‘The Hill’ gain most wide-spread acknowledgement, ‘What If’ is a powerful song that deserves an honourable mention.
4) ‘Curl Up Like a Dead Leaf and Go Where the Wind Blows’, Dust On the Ground (2009)
Where Bombay Bicycle Club typically conjure up sun-kissed tunes that bring synaesthesiac images of bright days and blue skies, this long-titled B-side represents the more Autumnal side of the band’s music. With melodic, monotone vocals layered over slow and melancholic guitar work, the track carries a regretful tone, reinforced in the lyrics “I pray that a black hole take her/gone from sight and never back and never back/ going back away, I waste away.” Despite this, the 6-minute melody features a soothing instrumental bridge and some deep, laidback hooks.
5) ‘Beg’, Beg (2012)
Released as a single between the third and fourth studio album, funky number ‘Beg’ never made it to a full length record, meaning it is an easily missed segment of the band’s back catalogue. A funky bassline is the most noticeable element of the track, leading up to an infectious chorus. Taking on a different style of sound to songs from A Different Kind of Fix and So Long, See You Tomorrow, it makes sense to remain as a single, but it is absolutely one that you need to hear.