Lovesick by Tennis System is an great blend of 90s grunge and modern indie with a dash of New Wave. This is the LA-based bands third album and I hadn’t listened to their previous work before getting Lovesick sent to me, but after Lovesick I listened to the bands previous albums and I can say that Tennis System makes good music. Lovesick is an risky evolution from the bands first two albums Teenagers and Technicolor Blind. The band ditched their more Mid-2000’s beachy indie vibes, but kept their dream-like aesthetic blending it with more heavy influence.
At first I wasn’t sure if I was going to like this Lovesick. The opening song “Shelf Life” and the following song “Cut” weren’t my favorites. I found them a bit confusing, but as the album progressives and with various re-listeners I did get an appreciation for the songs and how they establish what the album is trying to accomplished. One thing that I find very impressive about the entire album is how heavy, but angelic that songs sound. While only being a three-piece the things that they accomplish and genres they blind are very impressive. I find that the bands mix of new and old alternative styles makes it timeless.
The album doesn’t really pick up for me until track four “Esoteric”, but once I heard it I was completely hooked. It felt a lot more cleaner and fun than the previous songs on the album. From there the album is solid. The singles on the album “Rotting Out” and “Turn” are fantastic.
“Turn” sets up the final act of the album. The song starts out reminding me to of Nirvana’s “In Bloom”, but quickly mellows out until it enters a heavier chorus. Following “Turn” is a quick instrumental “Cologne” that bleeds into second to last track “Come Undone” a more a zombie like haunting song, like “Self-Life” and “Cut” making the album kind of come full circle when we get to the finale song the titular “Lovesick”. “Lovesick” is probably the softest track on the entire album and it does the best at showing off vocalist and guitarist Matty Taylor’s voice. The track ends on a piano solo that sends shivers down my spine.
Maybe track by track the there are songs that don’t work for me on their own but overall as a whole the I found myself listening to Lovesick over and over again without skipping a song. Overall Lovesick is enjoyable musically and lyrically interesting. I think that Tennis System are pushing themselves to create unique music that is larger than life, but still grounded and down to Earth.