Category Archives: Single/EP Reviews
Taman Shud make burly music; that’s the only thing you can really call it. The French quartet’s thundering barrage powers through multiple riffs and rhythmic movements without compromising their brutality. Their basic format, of course, has been repeated many times over. However, despite the lack of originally, it doesn’t make their debut any less compelling.
Thanks to the rise of Partai Records, Indonesia is currently in the midst of a guitar-driven serge. Memphys is the latest band to embrace Patrai’s “work and have fun with your music” mantra; the instrumental trio dabble with high-octave grooves and rhythmic surges just as well as their American cousins.
Merging the abrasive elements of grunge with the gnarly hard rock of yesteryear, Carpetriders’ debut release suggests the band are impervious to trends, which is just as well, as there will always be need for guitar-based exhilaration. Heavily influenced by the no-frills approach of Clutch, this three-track taster offers a lot of hints that Carpetriders’ have what it takes to go considerably further.
As monikers go, Buffalo Hump is a doozy that you simply can’t argue with, and it couldn’t fit this band more snugly. Cut from the same cloth as Monster Magnet and Queens of the Stone Age, Buffalo Hump’s formula is centred on swirling riffs rolled in a pungent haze of smoke, sweat and beer. Quite simply, rock & roll how it should be played.
Those who claim that Brahm haven’t an ounce of originality are clearly missing the point: Blues-orientated rock & roll is timeless. Whether a record was released in 1973 or 2013 is simply irrelevant.
Relics, the debut EP from Brahm, is a collection of dewy-eyed tunes that gleam through a kaleidoscopic haze of soulful riffs and deft drum fills. Channeling the elusive magic of the blues through bare instrumentation is no mean feat – many have tried and failed. Brahm, on the other hand, have crafted a record full of personality and warmth in their inaugural year.
The not-so-long awaited follow-up to February’s sister release, Volume 2 continues to explore the solitary sounds of garage-rock: From the alienated melancholy of ‘1929’ to the relentless drive of ‘Cuando Estemos en Tierra Firme’, the Buenos Aires four-piece aren’t afraid of variety. With two tasters in the space of a year, a full-length offering isn’t far away.
The city of Norwich has taken a battering in recent years: First there was Delia Smith, with her embarrassingly slurred sherry speech to the fans of the Canaries, and, as if to add insult to injury, the resurgence of Alan Partridge – while a superb comic creation, Partridge doesn’t do much for the status quo.
Clan, on the other hand, are not only repairing their city’s reputation, but they are also moulding their own: The trio’s doom-blues blend of leather-lunged rock, complete with Geezer Butler-esque grooves and expressive solos, are catchy and propulsive.
Unlike their peers, who are content with recreating Master of Reality over and over, Clan craft songs with depth and meaning: “Dreams are all that I have/ So don’t take them away,” wails Matt Pearce during ‘Leave it Be’ – and it’s this heartfelt honesty, which makes Clan the most existing young band in Britain.
Like the Black Keys before them, Sons From Planes have parked their classic blues and soul time machine somewhere between 1965 and 1970. The Red Sun, the band’s debut release, is a hearty collection of swaying grooves and upbeat rhythms offset by great, gusty vocals that are raw and pure.
The hardest thing for an instrumental jam band is maintaining the listener’s interest – once the sledgehammer riff has been executed, it’s more or less all over. Obscured By The Sun, Idaho’s premier sonic buskers, are inspired by the melodic and rhythmic impetus of the Mahavishnu Orchestra as much as they are by Black Sabbath and King Crimson. The result is a groove-orientated collection of viscous blues that smoulder and saunter in equal measure.
Very rarely does a collection of tracks warrant the tag ‘desolation rock’, however, Overland, the debut release from this Californian collective, is a gloomy sub-genre within a world of paranoia, where danger lurks in ever crevice, and the feeling of vulnerability is an everyday occurrence. Steeped in the apocalyptic melancholy of cinematic post-rock, this is a film score in waiting.
The self-titled debut from this Hamilton, Ontario four-piece is a tour de force of balls-to-the-wall rock’n’roll. Boasting an impressive collection of affective, downcast riffs and high-octave breakdowns, the EP showcases a band with impressive chops and confidence.