Sun 18th April 2010
There is an unwritten rule that I believe to be true, that all bands from the Midlands who dedicate themselves to the power of Thee Riffe must follow the word of the Sabbath. Judas Priest did it in the 70s (just check out their first couple of albums), Napalm Death did it by playing their copies of Sabotage on 45 instead of 33 and a 3rd, Cathedral have done it almost to the letter…and the list goes on!!! And so we have another band cranking their Matamps and busting out the fuzz in the age old tradition.
I was lucky enough to catch Gringo last year and was very impressed with their simple yet effective stoner vibes that brought to mind Roadsaw with a touch of pre shite era QOTSA. When this 3 track demo landed I was keen to hear how the band have progressed and was surprised to hear that things have taken an altogether darker turn and headed down the path of doom.
Opening track 'Neon' retains some vestiges of their older stoner sound but jacks up the fuzz and cloaks it in groove. Marc’s clean and melodic vocal style does tip it further towards the Count Raven camp but it works as the guy knows his way round a melody and has the pipes to carry it. The sky gets noticeably darker when second track 'Human Error' comes rolling in on an altogether heavier riff that does bring some comparisons with prime Cathedral and old school 90s doom (I believe the expression is 'true doom'…whatever that may mean!!!!). Final track, 'You Stay (We Belong Dead)' ups the tempo to settle into a nice Sabbath style boogie with maximum crunch factor.
Considering this was recorded live the guys have done a fine job of showing off their gig potential with a lovely fat sound. It may not be up there with the best recording, but for 4 guys cranking this out in the studio with everything turned up it sounds pretty damn impressive…and shows that multi tracking the shit out of a recording isn’t always necessary.
Overall an unexpected about turn but not entirely unwelcome. If these boys could get behind their promotion as much as they do their song writing we could be hearing more from them soon.