It is a remarkable achievement that vocalist Hannah Reid, producer Dot Major and Don Rothman have crafted such a cohesive and consistent project considering that they started making music together less than a year ago. The album never strays from the lonely glacial production and contrasting warmth of Reid’s vocals (which have been compared to fellow Brits Florence and The Machine and Jessie Ware). The opening track, “Hey Now”, the slowly building standout from their EP serves as a perfect introduction, where the angelic voice over an xx like minimalist backdrop of a snare and muted guitars provides a much more satisfying climax than any of the xx’s tracks do.
Loneliness seems to be central theme of the album, as tracks such as “Shyer”, in which Reid tells us how much more timid she is feeling, and “Wasting My Young Years”, in which she is fearful that she is wasting the time that is meant to be the best of her life. Through the build -up of these two tracks however, and the payoff when it all comes together, they come off as sounding courageous. She does not accept what she is saying, she is rebelling against it. Surprisingly, one of the standout of If You Wait For Me is a cover of the excellent Kavinsky and Lovefoxx’s “Nightcall”. Once again stripped down to essentials, including a rolling piano loop to replace the original synth, it becomes a beautifully haunting version of the slick electro pop track. They do what great bands do when they cover a song; they don’t cover it, they reinvent it.