Per Ardua Ad Astra is a refreshingly genuine slab of guitar-driven pop craftsmanship that makes clear, articulate, often beautiful statements and resonates with strong emotions.
On this, their debut album, Brisbane's Cartoon Physics mine alternative pop/rock styles ranging from the 80's onwards, making sometimes direct and sometimes oblique stylistic references to such luminaries as REM, XTC, the Smiths, the Pixies, Billy Bragg and Radiohead, as well as alternative Australian acts in the vein of Melbourne's Something for Kate.
Despite this diversity of style, the songs are consistent in their deft use of melody to invoke emotion. All these songs are smart, memorable and heartfelt. The material may be difficult to categorize, but each of these painstakingly crafted pieces possesses a strong identity that is unique to itself and will insinuate its way into your heart and head.
Per Ardua Ad Astra will make a fine addition to the music library of anyone who loves honest, intelligent alternative pop/rock.