Album Review: The Skints - Swimming Lessons
Believe it or not, our own backyard of Nashville, TN has a very prevalent reggae music scene that we’ve spent a lot of time in. With that said, whenever reggae infused music crosses our desks, we get a little extra pep in our step. That’s exactly what happened when we hit play on the The Skints latest album Swimming Lessons; their highly anticipated follow-up to 2015’s FM. “Learning To Swim” opens the album and instantly greets you with a chilled out reggae vibe throughout the verse, before hitting you with a punk explosion in the chorus and setting the tone for the juxtaposing of sounds you can expect as you press ahead. Their reggae flavor smashes into a sway-a-long island groove on “Gets On Top,” you’re injected with a straight ahead classic reggae sound with “On My Love,” a bit of punk rock fury on “The Island,” and a modern pop feel on “La La La.” However, as you might suspect by this point, The Skints never stay in one lane and the album takes a very interesting, dynamic turn when it dips into a traditional 1960’s Motown feel with “I’m A Fool,” and into a Simon & Garfunkel type of folk on “Donkey Brain.” Clearly not wanting to be pigeonholed into one style category, flavors of reggae, soul, punk, pop-infused dubstep, and even an oldies inspired sound lace the album. The Skints also further the depth of their sound by bouncing back and forth between vocalists to avoid ever going stale – Marcia Richards, Josh Waters Rudge, and Jamie Kyriakides all take turns at leads. It’s been 4 years since we’ve gotten new music from the UK based group, but it was certainly worth the wait. Swimming Lessons hits on all cylinders, gives us a great snapshot into the growth the band experienced between albums, and seamlessly flows in and out of a variety of sounds to offer us a body of work that never lets us lose the extra pep in our step that it initially gave us the first time we hit play.