Alaska is the debut EP from Tiny Spark, situated on the same label that plays home to One Night Only. The quintet describe their sound as melodic pop-rock with an alt-country twist, and cite Doves, Elton John and Ryan Adams as just some of their influences. This is an interesting mix of styles and sounds from a band who, creatively, met at art school.
If only the three songs lived up to the promise of the band's musical likes. The vocals on title track 'Alaska' have a fake American nasal twang, sung over a very basic piano, guitar-backed vocals base. Its three and a half minutes of radio-friendly pop-rock don't sound that different from The Fray/Keane/Plain White Ts on a particularly average day. 'Alaska' is very radio friendly - it's the kind of tune housewives up and down the country would be happy to bop along to.
Second track 'Go On' is again an inoffensive slice of pop-rock, but perhaps it's so bland it becomes offensive. The song feels like it might never end, though thankfully it does, leading straight into 'Never Met That Girl'. Perhaps the most confusing of the trio, the song starts out sounding like something James might have created, but then leads into some incredibly strange lyrics. The repetition of the title is only to be expected, but the line "you photographed me walking/That's insane" is just odd.
Tiny Spark's new EP is pop-rock by numbers, three tracks which do absolutely nothing new for either the band or the genre they're situated in.