'Painting a shimmering picture of a sublime summertime'
Tyler Damara Kelly
15:52 7th July 2020

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Self-awareness can come across in many different ways depending on what kind of person you are. For Oli and Louis Leimbach, the brotherly duo who make up Lime Cordiale, their laidback Aussie humour comes into play as they make a parody of self-help books on their second album, 14 Steps To A Better You.

Painting a shimmering picture of a sublime summertime that serves as a way to forget the stresses and degradation of the world around us; at first glance it seems as though Lime Cordiale’s songs lean into the idea that ignorance is bliss, especially in ‘Robbery’ which captures the essence of those hazy summer afternoons on a rooftop bar where the scent of warm lager lingers in the air, mixing with stale cigarette smoke that fills your lungs whilst the buzz of a crowd whirls around you. 

Across 14 Steps To A Better You is the band’s distinctive intonation where charm oozes and slips off the tongue, even if their words are slightly berating. ‘No Plans To Make Plans’ outlines an anthem for a disenfranchised generation who can’t make their minds up in deciding between getting on the property ladder or simply coasting by until they pass over into the afterlife. 

In a sense it ties into ‘Addicted To The Sunshine’ which meanders through our ironic ability to sit by and watch our planet fall into the kind of degradation that cannot be reversed. Sometimes it’s easier to sit in our dirty water, than to pull the plug and start again. With the global pandemic in mind, ‘We Just Get By’ can be taken, lyrically, as an accidental summation of the civil unrest and different ways people are handling lockdown: “We're unemployed, could have avoided it. Some get annoyed when paranoia hits. You can resist, but you'd be spoiling it. Why not just enjoy it?”

‘Screw Loose’ offers the first sight of something different from the surfer/indie rock vibes - it’s a schoolyard bruising hidden in sprechgesang two-tone - whilst ‘Elephant In The Room’ offers jazzy piano crooning that wouldn’t be amiss in a diner scene from Grease. As such, the album definitely lends itself to having an A-side and a B-side. The only thing that lets them down is a cycle of repetitive choruses in the first half, that go on for a little too long. 

The brothers might’ve set out to outline 14 Steps To A Better You, but unfortunately don’t seem to offer any solutions to their many relatable situations. Perhaps 14 Observations On Things You Should Probably Work On, might be more appropriate, though it doesn’t quite have the same ring.

14 Steps To A Better You is released on 10 July 2020 via Chugg Music and London Cowboys.

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