Sometimes it’s easy to pick a great release right from its first few seconds, and there’s no better example than Frightened Rabbit’s latest EP State Hospital.

The introductory title track begins with The National-styled humble, melancholy atmosphere that you’ve heard a million times before, but has somehow never lost its effect. This is layered under lead singer Scott Hutchison’s beautiful lyrics that are just vague enough to permit you to create your own interpretation of what his Scottish accent is belting out.

Hutchison’s poetic talent carries through each subsequent track, producing intriguing lines such as “I am never quite fully awake / and I am never quite asleep” and “The poets and omens rang as loud as the bells / with you at the altar, and me in the cells”.

It’s quite clear that the guitar-work and instrumentation throughout the album is comparable to a linear, slowed down style of Mumford and Sons, such as the recurring riff in “Off” and the banjo-like feel in “Boxing Night”.

It’s a shame that extended plays aren’t usually picked up by the majority of fans, because then they miss out on greats like State Hospital – one which touches on war, love, lust, and the perks of minimalism in this generation, in just twenty short minutes.

Get unlimited access to the coverage that shapes our culture.
to Rolling Stone magazine
to Rolling Stone magazine