Are Snow Patrol any good? This was just the subject of a heated debate in Stereogum’s Slack channel. They’re certainly not cool, and it’s been a full decade since this website has posted any of their songs. But my position is this: Hell the fuck yeah, Snow Patrol are good.
Snow Patrol have such a weird history. The band had deep roots in Glasgow’s historically fertile sad-bastard indie scene. They started out recording for the Jeepster label, just like Belle And Sebastian, and frontman Gary Lightbody was responsible for putting together the Reindeer Section, a supergroup that included members of just about every Glasgow indie band. But then Snow Patrol blew the fuck up in the mid-’00s, thanks to the moment where anything that sounded even slightly like Coldplay went into immediate heavy rotation on pop radio.
Your mileage may vary, but I maintain that Snow Patrol’s big, goopy MOR hits are great. “Chasing Cars”? “Run”? Inject those motherfuckers directly into my veins. Snow Patrol had a way of writing these huge, uplifting choruses that kept that old Glasgow melancholy somehow intact, which can’t have been an easy thing to do. Those songs made Snow Patrol famous enough that they were showing up on the Spider-Man 3 soundtrack and Gary Lightbody was duetting with Taylor Swift on the worst song from her masterpiece Red. Good for them! Get money, Gary Lightbody!
Anyway, Pitchfork reports that Snow Patrol are coming back this spring with Wilderness, their first album since 2011’s Fallen Empires. Jackknife Lee produced it. There’s an album trailer that features people krumping and breathing fire, two activities that I do not associate with Snow Patrol. But the music still sounds great! Here it is:
Wilderness is out 5/25 on Republic.