After the success of their stunning debut, Nothing but Thieves return to the front and have once again managed to raise the bar in the British rock scene.
Prior to 2015, Nothing but Thieves were relatively unheard of amongst a widespread audience – this relative animosity was positively abolished when their self-titled full-length burst into our ears. From brooding ballads, rich in emotion, such as If I Get High and Graveyard Whistling to gritty rock songs with near-epic hooks in the likes of Itch and Trip Switch – this album seemed to have it all.
If there was one dynamic that it may have lacked, it was a certain degree of tenacity that an outfit must endow themselves with in order to standout from their peers. Their new effort, Amsterdam absolutely ticks all the boxes. The introductory verse is paced and poised in a way that suggests something is about to kick off and, sure enough, the chorus is utterly explosive. The flow is pulsating and the timbre is striking – it’s a sound that is evolutionary of Nothing but Thieves’ previous outputs.
Of course, I must allow some words to discuss the vocals of Conor Mason which are, quite frankly, out of this world. I would go as far to say that this man is the most talented singer in British rock music since Muse’s Matt Bellamy. We were introduced to the capabilities of the soft-spoken Essex boy through the glistening falsetto that is littered throughout the back catalogue of this quintet. Moreover, Amsterdam further stretches the boundaries of this incredible voice. As the song progresses, we are treated to a sense of exasperation in the usually silky, smooth melodies and as Mason’s voice cracks and breaks into a tuneful shout it treats the listener to something we had not previously heard.
Overall, Amsterdam is a step up in the already stellar quality of Nothing but Thieves’ music. When they announced the release of their upcoming, second studio album (revealed to be titled Broken Machine) it was the icing to top off the world-class cake that is this single. I can’t wait for Broken Machine and I am absolutely buzzing to catch these guys live over the summer.