Sturt Avenue – How Do You Think It Should Be? – Album Review

For South Australia’s Sturt Avenue, the making of their debut album ‘How Do You Think It Should Be?’ was a family affair. But for the rest of us it’s a soothing education in indie-folk.

Adelaide indie-folk band Sturt Avenue are here with their debut album ‘How Do You Think It Should Be?’ 

With a Magic Numbers-esque, infectious, soothing vibe to their music, Sturt Avenue are showcasing their wealth of skills on their debut album ‘How Do You Think It Should Be?‘ 

With some songs dating back as far as 2015, this debut album has been a long time in the making. But that time in the oven seems to have treated it well, because it’s the perfect mid-week chilled listen

What makes this Americana-inspired album, by way of Adelaide, even more surprising is the fact that it’s creators are one big family. 

To give you a quick background to Sturt Avenue. We have SCALA Award-winning singer-songwriter Bryn Soden on lead vocals, acoustic guitar, and harmonica. Then there’s his dad John and sister Tarn on backing vocals, lead guitar and slide guitar respectively. Then come Bryn’s close friends Isaac Kerr on bass, Bryce Lehmann on drums, Dave Thompson on keys and Ollie Patterson on violin.

So with all that familial interaction happening, you might find it even harder to believe that they’ve managed to craft something so beautifully chilled. When most families get together it’s at Christmas and they usually can’t wait to get rid of each other, never mind pen an album together. 

However, Sturt Avenue have managed it. And, ‘How Do You Think It Should Be?’ is testament to what can be achieved when you trust each-other’s processes. 

Tunes like ‘Nowhere Town‘, ‘A Few Simple Lines‘ and ‘Flowers On The Sill‘ are heartachingly gentle. Then songs like ‘Sirens‘ and ‘Lions‘ prove they can also step up the tempo when they want to. 

Soden’s wonderful writing is framed stunningly among the lines of drifting guitars, atmospheric harmonica and gentle percussion.

However, for us, ‘Cannery Row’ is the shining star on the record. The combination of Soden’s vocal with his father and sister’s brogue creates a whole new dimension of beauty, while simultaneously adding another face to the record. 

Speaking about the album’s process Soden said: 

The title of the album is in essence the question I was asking of the band members as we brought these songs together. While the lyrics and chord progressions were written by me, when it came to the process of turning them into actual real-life songs, my goal was to give everybody the space to do what they do best. I wanted this record to sound like a band record rather than a singer-songwriter one.

Bryn Soden, sturt avenue

It’s no wonder Soden is an award-winning performer, his lyricism is rapier-like. But, where most people will feel he deserves a medal is by turning out something of such soothing beauty alongside his family.

How Do You Think It Should Be?‘ is available to download and stream everywhere now. Watch the video for ‘Lions’ below. 

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