When By the Sea’s frontman Liam Power sings of being “lost inside the forgotten sea,” there’s no doubt which waterway he means: the Mersey Estuary, home of jangling guitars, drowsy vocals, dreams of The Byrds and Love relocated to a wetter West Coast, a fantasy stretching through Shack in the 1980s to The Coral in the 2000s.
It’s a tradition that has fallen from view in recent years but the Wirral quintet mount a strong case for it on their second album, Endless Days Crystal Sky. Songs have depth and warmth, at times surging forward hopefully, elsewhere conveying an aching sense of melancholy, while synthesisers add a modern gloss to the nostalgia.
By the Sea
Endless Days Crystal Sky
(War Room Records)