I remember the first time I came across Campfire Social. It was a sunny day approximately two years ago and some new band had contacted me about a review. No idea who Campfire Social was, but I graciously accepted and ferociously scribbled a review. The next thing I knew, I was three pages down and listening to their music for the next two weeks. It’s odd how some bands have such an overwhelming effect, and Campfire Social is up there with the best.
Captivating and genre-defying, the UK-based quintet has turned not only my head but critics from The Other Side Reviews, Indie Top 39, Indie Ethos, iHeart Radio and BBC Introducing. Fusing enthusiastic melodies with heartfelt lyricism, Thomas Hyndman (vocals, guitar), Christopher Hembrough-Done (vocals, guitar), Carrie Hyndman (vocals, keys), Rhys Mather (bass) and Ben Matthews (drums) are a breath of fresh air in a stagnating indie scene. The latest addition to their well-received discography is Everything Changed.
The second studio-recorded EP from the indie-pop group, Everything Changed is a six-track release showcasing Campfire Social’s innovativeness as artists. Not only is the album a conglomeration of different styles, but each song traverses different tones, paces and designs within the individual track. It is this mish-mash of tunes that is intriguing and engaging as Campfire Social drags you through the ups and downs of life.
In many cases, I would hear a flow of upbeat to steadier sounds in an album – a simplistic flowing of one track into another. When it comes to Campfire Social, there is no real obvious flowing from one song to the other. The individuality of each tune makes it stand out, however, there is a certain melodic movement in the EP’s progression. From the hopeful ‘Everything Changed’ to the sentimental desperation of ‘On The Subject Of Death’ to the wistful innocence of ‘Wherever You Rest Your Head’, the band showcase their versatility and eclectic.
Dynamic instrumentation is evident throughout Everything Changed with the musicians showcasing their natural talent and relentlessness. I can’t say one instrument outshines the other as they all work in harmony leading to powerful, hard-hitting and breath-taking tunes. The one element that remains constant throughout is Thomas’s rich, bold and warm vocals. From the energetic throatiness of ‘Awake In The Wake Of A Wave’ to the poignant smoothness of ‘On The Subject of Death’ Thomas easily captures the essence of the content and sound.
It is painfully difficult to choose a favourite from Everything Changed but I believe my preferred song is ‘Wherever You Rest Your Head’. Easy transitions from a folk-esque beginning to heavier alternative rock listening to this song is like combining The Maine and Death Cub For Cutie. It is the final song on Everything Changed and I love how Campfire Social end the EP on such a kaleidoscopic high-note.