For better or worse, lots of young bands rush headlong into their first albums. Not Radiant City. The Melbourne duo has released four EPs over the years in what now seems like the epic lead-up to No Errors, a proper debut album. But it's hard to fault drummer Brad Marshall and guitarist Andrew McLaughlin, who have spent that time painstakingly refining a stirring strain of post-rock that's up there with Slint, Mogwai, and Australia's own Black Cab. A careful craftsmanship comes through in the somewhat austere instrumental June, the effects-battered drums and general turbulence of Key Control, and even in McLaughlin's distorted vocals on the seven-minute Safe And Secure. Despite standing just two strong, the duo teases much tension and depth out of guitar, drums, electronics, and the occasional vocals.
Like fellow Melbourne post-rockers Margins, though, Radiant City doesn't reach for easy build-ups and catharsis. It's more about the journey, the interplay, and the unique voices that instruments can develop when there aren't swaggering singers or pesky verse-chorus structures to get in the way. And for a band that makes the most of space, No Errors offers Radiant City a whole album's worth of it to play around with.
Doug Wallen, September 2010.