This Wild Life: Petaluma
8.4Overall Score

This Wild Life, Petaluma

Listening to this record is like standing on the top of a hill in the wind. Breathing each song in is akin to inhaling a lightness that will make you feel gossamery enough to float. It’s the delicacy of This Wild Life’s delivery that does it. ‘I’m breaking out,’ sings Kevin Jordan on the gorgeous, Jimmy Eat World-esque Positively Negative, and that is exactly what it sounds like he’s doing. Petaluma is the sound of a titchy, tiny chick finally pecking his way through its shell. At once vulnerable and full of possibility, it’s a record that will speak to you on the deepest, most personal level.

You’ll have already heard the glistening single, Hold You Here. As the centre point of this soothing album, it becomes even more poignant, even more powerful. Elsewhere, there’s College Kids, a track which would clearly make sense of This Wild Life on any musical map already charting kindred spirits Jack’s Mannequin and Dashboard Confessional. Not that this is a stereotypical ‘emo’ record. Headfirst is a pop smash waiting to happen and Catie Rae is another with the potential to crossover.

Indeed, Petaluma could wow whole stadiums full of Ed Sheeran or Mumford & Sons fans as easily as it will melt the hearts of more discerning listeners. Let’s hope it does exactly that.

Petaluma is released Friday 22nd June via Epitaph.