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  • Writer's pictureSammie Starr

Album Review: Coastal Fire Dept. - 'Outsiders'

UK Post Grunge crew Coastal Fire Dept. releases new album Outsiders.


Bands like Coastal Fire Dept. are one of those nostalgic treasures in the post-grunge scene that once you find them, it's impossible to get their sound out of your head. Intensely atmospheric and aggressive as the tides that crash against the beaches in springtime, for the past ten years Coastal Fire Dept. have established a unique and tenacious sound starting with their debut mini-album, Control. In 2021, the fuzzy rock unit would drop their first full-length album, Connected, and their standalone single, "You’re Stuck," where the band collaborated with Ken Andrews (Failure, Stone Temple Pilots, Chris Cornell). With a desire to grow from their last release, the second half of 2021 saw a graduated shift toward a hearty guitar-driven sound. Now the band has released their new album, Outsiders.


The best track experience on Outsiders is "Stranger Towns." Everything from its attention to detail to harmonies within its guitar structures to the fuzzy implementations, impactful percussive energies, poignant lyrics, and passioned vocals, shows Coastal Fire Dept. dedication to their craft and gives listeners this "Better Than Ezra-esque" feeling that is so beautifully and uniquely replicated througout the experience.

From the beginning, Coastal Fire Dept. takes us back through time with their first experience, "What Do I Do." A gorgeous mix of gritty and echoing guitars that intertwine with wispy vocals of another era, Coastal Fire Dept. sets up their rich album journey for one heck of a ride filled with lots of surprises along the way.


"Gun" is another major highlight on the album. Vocally and lyrically showing off some of the best of Coastal Fire Dept.'s creative chops, the band pulls off all the stops to build a truly memorable experience that leaves one favorably stuck in another time for almost four minutes, and the feeling is almost indescribable, but feels beautiful on the ears.


The best track experience on Outsiders is "Stranger Town." Everything from its attention to detail to harmonies within its guitar structures to the fuzzy implementations, impactful percussive energies, poignant lyrics, and passioned vocals, shows Coastal Fire Dept. dedication to their craft and gives listeners this "Better Than Ezra-esque" feeling that is so beautifully and uniquely replicated througout the experience.


The album finishes with the last track, "Human Safari." A stripped-down acoustic departure from the record's mostly immense soundscapes, it's a lovely ending tune that doesn't detract from its overall melancholic tone. The band demonstrates that they are more than capable of achieving something similar on future album releases by displaying a more intricate and multi-faceted character of Coastal Fire Dept.


Outsiders is a magical snapshot in time that embraces the beautiful post-grunge of the ninties while embracing the modern hard rock elements that we have come to adore today. While the band has been making music since 2013, Coastal Fire Dept. illustrates that their music can only expand and grow more stunning with time.




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