After a change in vocalist and then a reversion to original front man Colm McGuinness Protobaby are back with the long overdue follow up to their debut album “The Spark”.
“Cosmic Heart” is certainly worth the wait with plenty of elements that fans of the band will love but enough developments in their sound to bring new followers into the Protobaby fold.
That is born out right from the off, “Fractions of Dark” is a very interesting and captivating start with a blend of acoustic guitar, stark synths and of course the wonderful baritones of McGuinness to the fore.
“Questions & Doubts” features more great keyboard work with a very baroque, ominous atmosphere which is echoed in the line “I don’t know if I want to live this life”.
If there is an out and out classic Protobaby track on the album then it has to be “Popstars” and its no surprise that it was chosen as the launch single - anthemic without having to reach out for easy hooks or choruses it sees Protobaby at their very best.
“Revolution Wanted” is probably the highlight track on the album for me, with an excellent driving bass, processed guitar and more great synths, with the vocals sitting perfectly in the mix (in an era where there’s an appalling trend to have the lead vocal dominating proceedings).
After “Charity” another excellent robust rocker the album comes to a close in a similar vein to how it began with “End of Day”, a track which with the delicate acoustic guitar of Tony Monahan evokes the mellow closing of a day perfectly.
At nine tracks “Cosmic Heart” is a lean animal of an album but one which is ultimately very satisfying and sees Protobaby return with renewed vigour.
Catch them live in the Kasbah Social Club on April 9th.
“Cosmic Heart” is available now to download, on CD and on limited edition blue vinyl through all the usual outlets and online at protobaby.bandcamp.com