The Irish indie and rock scenes are as strong and as stacked now as they ever have been. Artists like The Academic, Biig Piig and whenyoung are up and comers who have gathered an adoring following and Fontaines D.C. have took the music world by storm.
However, one of the most exciting bands to come out of this scene recently is Inhaler, they have been since their debut single I Want You in 2018. Now, in 2021, the fourpiece have finally dropped their debut album It Won’t Always Be Like This, and it is every bit as rousing and hopeful as those six words sound.
It Won’t Always Be Like This was the band’s breakout single back in 2019 so it feels apt that it gets a loving revamp as the album’s opening track. The re-record is grungier, punchier, and as catchy as ever. Lead singer Eli Howson’s vocal range is on full display from the outset and it’s a true joy of a song about the heartache and longing of a break-up.
The boys follow their breakthrough hit with their biggest hit to date, the unparalleled tune that is My Honest Face. It still blows my mind that this was only the band’s third single when it was released in 2019. The standout here is Josh Jenkinson’s unbelievable guitar riffs that provide the power to this powerhouse of a track.
The first unheard track on the album is Slide Out The Window which shows a much calmer and mellower side of the band. An inhaler if you will, helping the listener to breathe after an opening double that leaves you breathless. This is placed before the album’s lead single, the euphoric Cheer Up Baby. This cut sees Inhaler at their anthemic best with punchy drums from Ryan McMahon, rousing vocals, and a chorus that I cannot wait to hear live on their tour in September/October. Cheer Up Baby has been a standout since they released it, and nothing has changed. Follow-up A Night On The Floor is a sultry effort and My King Will Be Kind is another solid track about a particularly bitter break-up. It’s a track full of loathing featuring a surprise appearance on the album by an acoustic guitar.
The album wastes no time in bringing back the anthems though with it’s eighth track, When It Breaks, which is the perfect post-lockdown track about coming together and having a good time, with Eli specifically referencing “Paris in ’45, the whole world’s waiting to come alive”, a sentiment that feels as true now as it did when the tracked debuted as a single in 2020. However, When It Breaks precedes the album’s true standout in Who’s Your Money On. The ninth instalment on the album is a slice of euphoria and maturity from the band that gains traction and pulls you in deeper with every second that passes before you’re hit with the beautifully tender second half of the track, Plastic House, which doesn’t feel out of place within this six-minute song and it is a refreshing, Radiohead-inspired moment of solace in album that hits you in the face from start to finish.
Totally was the final single preceding the album. Powered by a groovy bassline from Robert Keating, the song tells the tale of a couple who just can’t find anything in common as Eli wonders “why does it hurt me so much?” since the girl in question “don’t even mean that much”. Strange Time To Be Alive strips back the Inhaler sound to it’s bare bones for a minute (well, a minute and four seconds) before launching into the chaotic closer In My Sleep. It feels a lot like a cut from American Idiot-era Green Day and it offers the perfect closer for the album, a rousing culmination of Inhaler’s sound.
A lot of the talk surrounding Inhaler has always been singer Eli Hewson’s relation to one of Ireland’s greatest artists. He’s the son of U2 frontman Bono and the similarities in vocals are clear at points on this album. However, he more than comes out of his father’s shadow on this LP, and his bandmates stride out confidently alongside him. It Won’t Always Be Like This is an album that delivers on a promise and a hype that has been years in the making. It does so with gusto and maturity that betrays the band’s youth. Inhaler have arrived, and they’ve brought some anthems with them.
For More Information Visit: www.inhaler.band
Article By Matt Codd