Released: 9th July 2021
Try as they might, Inhaler will never be able to run away from that elephant in the corner. They may be the most exciting band to emerge from indie’s packed masses in a good while now. They might be able to connect on a grand level while deftly avoiding the cliched ranks of clogging pub rockers. They could have a run of future festival anthems tucked firmly under their belt. Everyone’s still going to want to talk about Dad.
When people complain about musicians being born into privilege, they’re usually referring to money, power, influence – all that jazz. It’s fair to say Elijah Hewson will struggle to avoid that sort of chatter, as much as he and his bandmates might like to. But the truth is, none of that matters – because what Inhaler really are blessed with doesn’t come from bank accounts or considerable sway. It’s genetics.
Strip away everything else, close your eyes, and just listen. In inheriting a vocal that arguably might even better one of pop’s most iconic voices, Inhaler’s greatest challenge is simply to use what God (or, y’know, someone else – Ed) gave them. It’s not enough to gain entry alone, but coupled with intelligent, instinctive songwriting, it’s the gusting wind beneath some mighty wings.
‘It Won’t Always Be Like This’ – the perfect title for an album landing in the middle of generational upheaval – has everything. The big hitters are present and correct – both ‘My Honest Face’ and ‘Cheer Up Baby’ are destined to last the test of time – but those moments as yet unheard stand just as strong. ‘My King Will Be Kind’ anchors the record with what’s sure to become a fan favourite, while ‘Totally’ could well be the band’s strongest statement yet. Some might attempt to cast shade with inevitable comparisons, but that’s to suggest having the talent to echo an iconic band is some sort of flaw. If anything, it’s a marker of just how great Inhaler could become.
Yes, Inhaler are a band who will always have their legacy forced upon them by others – but that’s when the music needs to do the talking. ‘It Won’t Always Be Like This’ is a mic drop moment. With everything else cast aside, it’s the music that matters. Inhaler have nothing left to prove.