As it turns out the debut album from Nothing But Thieves was worth the wait. The Deluxe version of the self-titled album features 16 songs and they all tell a different story in a different style for the UK band that I have a new found respect for. They’re a little grungy, but then Conor Mason’s falsetto soul vocal hits and they establish a sound that’s completely theirs.
This deluxe version of the album has so many highlights that it’s impossible to list them all. My personal favorites include the old-school guitar effects on the opening track, “Excuse Me.” That’s followed by “Ban All The Music” a classic track that could be in music fans’ playlists for decades. The chorus on “Wake Up Call” features some addictive accenting guitar licks behind Mason’s stellar vocal. All three of those songs are more upbeat in nature, but the band can do mellow really well too. “Graveyard Whistling” is a smooth soulful track that’s just a cool track to groove out to. The only negative thing that I can say about this record is that at times they get a little carried away with Mason’s vocal. A great example is the constant falsetto wale in the chorus. They could have done that on one of the final choruses and it would have been fine, but they decided to do that in every single one – in end it just doesn’t work. There are a few moments like that on this record but they’re there in an understandable way. If I’m this band, I want to take advantage of Mason’s vocal and use him as much as possible wherever I could too.
Nothing But Thieves comes out of the gates with an amazing self-titled debut LP. We’ve been waiting for a release for a couple of years, and I have to say that the wait was well worth it. This should finish on a lot of end of the year lists as the best album released in 2016 and deservedly so.