track of the week ~ 'come the night' ~ in an instant

After eighteen long years of touring the world, U2 ~  Ireland's Beatles and pop-record breakers supreme ~ finally returned to Belfast last week.

They blasted their way through a set spanning three decades, captivating an audience who have, quite literally, grown up with their music. One such example stood loyally in the front row, engrossed by the sight and sound of the biggest band in the world; his name is Mark Hegan, and as the frontman of Bangor's beloved In An Instant the idea of one day taking to the famous Odyssey Arena* must be ever-present. For the band themselves, their own absence from the stage must no doubt feel like eighteen years! After extensive touring for their debut EP 'Light You Know and Love', the band took some time out to regroup, relax and attempt the follow up to one of 2014's most highly acclaimed local records...

For any band's with an electronic edge, finding a distinct sound can be more difficult than you might think. Somehow In An Instant have found their voice within the synths. Be this through Mark Hegan's driving rhythm guitar work (which sounds punchier than ever before here, we might add) or the band's total devotion to a strong melody remains open for debate; what isn't, however is the undeniable quality of this 21st century pop song.

Part of the reason In An Instant's debut caught so many off guard was the feel-good nature of most of the tracks. Even those swimming in melancholy, where Hegan sounded close to combustion, retained a dance like-element. A quick look around some of the UK's biggest charting bands and you'll see evidence of this formula everywhere; The Cure ~ 'Just Like Heaven', The 1975 ~ 'Sex', anything by Morrissey etc, etc. None of these you'd call joyous anthems, yet if they came on in a club you'd no doubt see a full dancefloor and in 'Come The Night' that special element is greater than ever before.

Whilst the band continue to carve out their own path stylistically, there's no denying the huge stadium rock elements that continue to grow on every release. Guitarist Ryan Davison's riff's here sparkle like Coldplay's Jonny Buckland, whilst the slow-down's in the second verse add weight to Hegan's emotional lyricism.

It was never going to be easy following 'A Light You Know and Love', yet here we are again.

To paraphrase their frontman, 'Come The Night' is not just alright, it's pretty damn beautiful.

Taylor Johnson

* or SSE, if you're into that sort of thing.

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