The Sea The Sea are an indie five-piece from Oxford who are hoping to be the next great band to hail from the dreaming spires. This EP, called Four Demos, contains – wait for it! – four demos. It might be easy to pour scorn on an uninspired choice of name, but hold your horses for just a second, because their EP title is more savvy that it first appears.
Simply put, The Sea The Sea are presenting us with a set of four very good songs. These tracks are very well written, performed with gusto and conviction, and arranged with a sophistication often lacking in wet-behind-the-ears-bands' debuts. For an indie band in the truest sense of the word, the tracks here are well recorded, too, but (and I'm sure you guessed there was a ‘but’ coming...) they are indisputably demos. The production, while tidy and professional, lacks the sparkle and flair that generally only comes from big budgets, plenty of time, and an experienced ‘pro’ producer. Can we fault them for this? Possibly, because these songs are so good you feel they really need the zip and spring and presence of a big-budget record to do them justice, and anything less leaves the listener feeling short-changed. However, they've told us these are demos from the get-go, in a Ronseal-style does-exactly-what-it-says-on-the-tin fashion. So we're obliged to listen through these recordings to the record we want to hear; and the record that these songs could be from is very good indeed.
Any new band would be rightly proud of these recordings, but The Sea The Sea are clearly capable of taking this set much further. Four Demos sounds like a soon-to-be-massive band shopping their songs around prior to hitting the studio-proper. All they need now is a Paul Epworth or a Peter Katis to add a little polish, and the result will no doubt be magical.