To me, Inhaler seemingly sprang from nowhere. The Dublin four-piece’s debut album, ‘It Won’t Always Be Like This’, has grown and grown though since then, cropping up in my personal Spotify playlists increasingly. So, here I am, putting pen to paper (rather, fingers to keyboard) and reviewing it somewhat retrospectively… Better late, and all that.
It all gets going with the title track, which plainly repeats the notion that things “won’t always be like this”. That rapidly becomes a phrase so simple to translate across so many situations and scenarios, that it doubles as a slick way to hammer home the name of their new record’s game — and quite literally, too. There’s no disputing what you’re listening to at all.
As that’s such a hit, it’s worth me veering from the chronology to call out the other massive tunes. For me, ‘When It Breaks’ is a clear front runner, with its doomsday, all-hell’s-loose vibe. There’s even a nod to Paris in 1945, so it was designed to resonate dramatically. ‘Slide Out The Window’ and ‘In My Sleep’ are among the winning belters as well, mostly for their catchiness, with cute subtleties tossed in.
What makes this album such a corker is that it, unapologetically, slots into the indie-rock genre. It’s not experimental or quirky enough to be pigeonholed as post-noughties indie, and it certainly has its fair share of jangly elements, so it isn’t proper rock either. Think lashings of Blossoms, The Snuts, Catfish and The Bottlemen, Foals, and even Sam Fender, plus stacks of its own personality. Naturally.
If you’re in any doubt about there not being a multitude of meaty, powerhouse riffs, don’t be — songs such as ‘My Honest Face’ have plenty of feistiness in that guitar-led department. There’s also a mellow, semi-grunginess to the chief hook on ‘Cheer Up Baby’, which descends into an uptempo, pop-esque chorus. ‘A Night On The Floor’ isn’t dissimilar in its make-up.
But for a slight difference in style, the jazzy synths and rumbling bass notes of ‘Who’s Your Money On? (Plastic House)’ are welcome additions. I reckon you’ll surely be swept up in the piano-laced funkiness of bittersweet ‘Totally’, too.
With those being the major standouts, let’s put a pin in my waffling so that you can get to spinning the album. That’s if you haven’t been rinsing it already…
If you only download one track, let it be: ‘When It Breaks’