LOUZADA – ‘The Z Files’ TRACK-BY-TRACK

Louzada band photo

by ZAK SLOMAN

Louzada will be unveiling debut EP ‘The Z Files‘ this Friday, and with it being highly-anticipated by the London hard rock outfit’s rapidly-growing legion of followers, the band recently took the time to go through the upcoming release with me.

INITIAL IDEA

Our idea for ‘The Z Files‘ was to create something striking, in terms of both how it looked and how it sounded. We enlisted the services of Visual Decay Art & Design to create the wanted poster-style front cover.

The title fitted well, because it portrayed the band as being on the run and showing off our new breed of rock and roll everywhere we go. It sounds clichéd, but we feel this concept, and who we are matched perfectly!

‘ALL OVER THE WORLD’

This song is simply a powerful expression of who we are and what we aspire to do, therefore we deemed it to be the perfect opener for the EP. Lots of our idols started off their albums in the exact same fashion!

We basically wrote this song with one question in mind, “How can we make this song sound as much like AC/DC as possible?” Obviously the subject of this song is something that those guys have been doing for so many years, so we thought it was the perfect formula to follow! Everything about this song screams AC/DC from start to finish.

‘DREAMING OF YOU’

This is definitely our most commercially successful song on the EP. Every band has their sing-along favourite, and this is ours! This one has a summer vibe to it; it’s about meeting a girl and falling in love!

In terms of musicality, we took our hard rock sound and incorporated blues and a pop-style chorus into it, as these are two things that many music fans can instantly identify. We took our inspiration from 80’s glam bands such as Whitesnake and Mötley Crüe in both the instrumentation and vocal styles.

‘DROWN’

This is another song that we intended to relate with our listeners on an emotional level, and another one with a story behind it that many people can relate to. It portrays the situation of an abusive relationship, where one party is being controlled, used, and lied to by the other, and the lyrics depict the feelings and thoughts of the sufferer as the situation progresses.

The title of the song speaks for itself; anybody in an abusive situation feels their sanity and mental health slowly deteriorating. It also depicts the moment that the sufferer says enough is enough and fights back. The melodies and chord progressions here were largely inspired by modern alternative rock bands such as the Foo Fighters and Nickelback.

‘WHAT’S COMING NOW’

This is the most aggressive track on the EP, and it really shows off our influences from bands such as Metallica and Motörhead. This one can be interpreted in several ways, for example, some may interpret it as our response to current issues in the world, and the chaos that ensues as a result.

However, others may interpret it in a more music-oriented way. The chorus starts with the line, “The world isn’t ready for what’s coming now…“. In this way, it refers to our new rock sound, which we want to show off to the world.

‘DEMONS’

This one is the most complex song on the EP. The changes in the groove and tempo in the second half of the song, and the intense playing style of all the instruments make it a suitable closing track.

It talks about mental health, which is something that continues to be a huge issue, especially in the music industry, and the first half portrays an individual battling the demons in his head, feeling like he has nowhere to go, and nobody to turn to, however, the second half of the song portrays the person’s determination to battle his demons and ultimately win his fight.

Bands such as Avenged Sevenfold, Helloween, and Alice In Chains were a huge influence on us when writing this song with the slow-to-fast tempo change, the guitar melodies, the vocal styles, and the intense double kick drum towards the end.

In summary, this song is our way of encouraging those who are struggling that they can and will overcome any obstacle, no matter the size.

Louzada EP Cover

‘THE Z FILES’ – THE DEBUT EP FROM LOUZADA – WILL BE RELEASED THIS FRIDAY, AND FURTHER INFO ON THIS – AND THE BAND – CAN BE FOUND HERE & HERE.

 

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A CHAT WITH LOUZADA

Louzada band logo

by ZAK SLOMAN

This Friday, London collective Louzada will be releasing their debut EP – entitled ‘The Z Files‘ – which will undoubtedly see the band build on their rapidly-growing reputation.

Formed in the autumn of 2017 by vocalist Jason Payne, bassist Ted Phipps, and drummer Izzy Taylor, who were all students at the UK capital’s British And Irish Modern Music Institute (or BIMM for short) campus, the then-trio – whose name originated from Jason‘s home town in his native Portugal – got to work straight away, meeting on a daily basis to rehearse.

However, the wheels would only be put into further motion when the outfit began to collaborate with esteemed producer Stuart Epps – who has worked in the past with such legendary musical names as Led Zeppelin, Oasis, and George Harrison.

We enjoyed the time we spent with Stuart“, the band say, “He really helped us to grow in regards to both our sound, and as musicians.

This experience gave the collective the confidence to further develop a diversely-influenced hard rock sound that takes no prisoners, strikes the right balance of retro and contemporary, and is accompanied by lyrical content inspired by issues that are relatable to listeners everywhere, which is something that they first effectively showcased last year with inaugural track, ‘Dreaming Of You‘.

That song was a real game-changer, because as a result of that, we came to be one of the most streamed London bands on ReverbNation, and we started to get plenty of invitations to play live shows.

From there, Louzada began to really make a mark on the city’s underground live music scene, impressing crowds with mesmerising, high-energy sets, including one at the Camden Rocks Festival earlier this summer, and this is something that the outfit – who recently added rhythm guitarist Johnny Hail to their ranks – are keen to capture with the upcoming release.

The EP will mark a paradigm shift in the music world. It has a very powerful sound with a driving pulse, and it’s going to show the world that rock isn’t dead – it is actually very much alive and well.

It is a bold statement from a band who have so far only brought out a handful of singles, however, having now successfully broken through into a scene where many musicians have gone before, and have failed spectacularly, it has to be justified.

Louzada EP Cover

‘THE Z FILES’ – THE DEBUT EP FROM LOUZADA – WILL BE RELEASED THIS FRIDAY, AND FURTHER INFO ON THIS – AND THE BAND – CAN BE FOUND HERE.

 

LOUZADA

Louzada band photo

LOUZADA (from l-r): Jason Payne (vocals/lead guitar), Johnny Hail (rhythm guitar), Izzy Taylor (drums/vocals), Ted Phipps (bass/vocals)

INTERVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN

From LondonLouzada have firmly established themselves on the city’s underground live music scene since forming in late 2017 with a no-holds-barred hard rock sound that truly manages to strike the right balance of retro and contemporary, and now, with a highly-anticipated debut EP – entitled ‘The Z Files‘ – set for release later this week, the band went into detail with me about that, as well as themselves.

How did the band initially form?

The band started in September 2017, with the three original members: Jason, Ted, and Izzy. We were fellow BIMM London students, and we started straight away, rehearsing every day, and recently, we met our new member, Johnny, who is currently filling the role of rhythm guitarist.

How did the name Louzada come about?

We wanted to pay homage to a Portuguese town called Lousada, since our lead singer is from there. We love to perform here, and our first international show was there at a festival known as Grandiosas 18.

What would you say was your approach to songwriting?

Jason usually writes the main riff, or the first idea for a song, then the band all get together to start the arrangements, adding more instrumentation to the main idea. We could say that our music is very much influenced by our idols, but we add our own messages that we want to get across, as well as our own personality.

In effect, we add a 21st century vibe to our 80’s hard rock sound, the 80’s being the era that has influenced us the most.

What inspires the band lyrically?

We could say that we get inspired by everything that it is real in this world, for example, our current political issues, things we like and do, as well as what isn’t real and can’t be seen so clearly, for example, the search for our purpose in life, more metaphysical and philosophical themes, and our imagination of what surrounds us mentally and physically.

Last year, you brought out your debut single, entitled ‘Dreaming Of You’. How was the immediate response to it?

As a result of that song, we came to be one of the most streamed London bands on ReverbNation, and we started to get plenty of invitations to play shows.

And shortly, the band will be unveiling ‘The Z Files’, their first EP. How was the recording process for that?

We entered the studio with everything very organised and well structured, but from the first day onwards, every song started to change. Our producer got involved both lyrically, and in the songwriting, and we all think it is safe to say that we gained a lot of experience, and developed our music to get a unique sound that anybody will easily identify as a Louzada song.

Also, the new release was produced by Alessio Garavello, who has worked with the likes of A New Tomorrow and Dragonforce. How was working with him as an experience?

Working with Alessio was fantastic since he put his heart and soul into the making of the album, he pushed us towards a very good musical direction, and he always demanded the best version of the musicians we are.

And what can be expected from the EP?

The Z Files‘ will mark a paradigm shift in the music world. It has a very powerful, energetic sound with a driving pulse, and it is going to show the world that rock isn’t dead – it is very much alive and well.

The band performed at the Camden Rocks festival earlier this summer, and have also played at venues across London. How is the overall live experience for you all?

It has been a very pleasant experience for us, and it made it possible for us to grow as musicians, and as human beings.

EP aside, what are your plans for the near future?

We will keep on rolling with the shows- we actually have a very special one at the O2 Academy Islington in December! We’ll keep on engaging with our fans doing all kinds of musical activities during the rest of this year, and next year, we’ll start our first big tour. Also, we have some surprises coming soon for our fans.

And lastly, what is the band’s long-term aim?

We want to establish ourselves as a very well respected band in the music industry, we also want to keep expanding our horizons in the art we create, as well as in the distances our music and shows can achieve.

Louzada EP Cover

‘THE Z FILES’ – THE DEBUT EP FROM LOUZADA – WILL BE RELEASED THIS FRIDAY, AND FURTHER INFO ON THE BAND CAN BE FOUND THROUGH THE FOLLOWING SITES:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

INSTAGRAM

YOUTUBE

 

 

 

 

GLASS PEAKS

Glass Peaks band photo

GLASS PEAKS (from l-r): Grant Tugwell (drums), Alf Jefferies (vocals/guitar), Jake Cox (guitar)

INTERVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN

PHOTO by ANT ADAMS

Since forming in 2016, Glass Peaks have been consistently honing a diversely-influenced sound that is harmonic, laden with hooks, and an effective showcase for their musical talents, which has resulted in the band amassing a dedicated and rapidly-growing fan base, as well as plaudits from much of the British music press, and having just unveiled ‘Asbestos‘ – their new single – along with an accompanying video filmed at the iconic Abbey Road Studios, the Kent three-piece spoke to me about all of that, their influences, songwriting approach, future plans, and much more.

How did the band initially form?

ALF JEFFERIES (vocals/bass)Grant and Jake used to be in a band together a few years back. I spotted a video they posted online when they initially formed Glass Peaks, loved the sound they were creating, and I pretty much begged to be involved, and here we are three years later!

JAKE COX (guitar): I had worked out in the US for a few months, and on my return, I knew the first thing I wanted to do was to form a fresh new band, and three years later, here we are.

How did the name Glass Peaks come about?

ALFJake, Grant, and an old member of the band were sat in a chicken shop when they were trying to figure out the name. They had already landed on “Peaks” because of Grant‘s love of the show ‘Twin Peaks‘, and Jake wanting some aspect of nature in the bands name.

They were plucking random words out, and seeing what fit, and then realised they were sat opposite a glass shop. Thus, Glass Peaks was born out of chicken and double glazing. 

JAKE: That’s the true story, but we like to tell people it’s because when you’re at the peak of life, love, your career etc, it’s like walking on glass, so tread carefully, as it could fall through at any point.

What are the band’s main musical influences?

ALFFoals, Radiohead, Reverb, and all things a bit sad.

JAKE: I think we’re all heavily influenced by all things 80’s & 90’s.

GRANT TUGWELL (drums)TEARS FOR FEARS!

What would you say was your approach to songwriting?

ALF: It varies, to be honest. I write lyrics/lines/poems all of the time without music, so there’s always ideas knocking about – however musically, we usually approach it as a three. One of us may have a riff, a beat, or a melody in mind, and we’ll then build around it.

More recently, I’ve been bringing almost fully-constructed tracks to the guys, and we’ve tweaked them from there, but that’s not always the case!

GRANT: Musically, I go with what sounds right. If it rolls, it rolls, if not, I try and throw a spanner in, and throw it in a completely different direction.

What inspires the band lyrically?

ALF: I usually write lyrics centered around anything I feel particularly strongly about, or something that has left a profound effect on me, but the downside to that is that it’s usually quite sad and bleak.

I suppose the upshot of that is that I’m able to get things off my chest, and I find songwriting to be a form of therapy, really, because if I didn’t have the ability to get whatever I’m feeling out in music, I wouldn’t know how to release it, so it’s a good thing, ultimately. 

You have just unveiled a new single, entitled ‘Asbestos’. How was the recording process for that?

ALF: We recorded ‘Asbestos‘ with our friend Erim, who is based near to our practice space in Jake and Grant‘s home town. It’s always very nice to work on music with a great friend.

GRANT: The process was smooth. The song really nicely came together, as we had an idea of how we wanted it to sound, and when we added the cherries on top, it was only more sweet.

And the band were invited to the iconic Abbey Road Studios to record a live version of the track. How did that come about?

ALF: Our friend Liam was lucky enough to be studying at the Abbey Road Institute, and kindly invited us along to record a session.

That was really special for us, and we used it as an opportunity to invite the incredible Danny Lowman along to capture footage of the session on the day as well, which you can check out on YouTube

Also, recording at Abbey Road must have been quite an experience for you all.

JAKE: It was truly magical. Such an inspiring place.

GRANT:  It really was, as it’s something not a lot of people get to do. I didn’t think I’d ever walk those hallowed halls.

The band have supported the likes of The Amazons and White Lies, and have also performed at such festivals as Camden Rocks and Isle Of Wight. How were they as experiences?

JAKE: Amazing and very messy. I don’t think we’ve ever just played a show and gone straight home, as we like to make the most out of our gigs, and keep the night going until the early hours until Grant has been sick in his hands, or something rank, but yeah, supporting big bands is always fun, and there’s nothing better then playing festivals.

GRANT: Getting to see Depeche Mode live was a dream I was able to experience, so pretty awesome!

And how is it playing live on stage?

JAKE: Energy, energy, energy. We will always give it 100% up on the stage, and I feel we have such a beautiful connection up there.

GRANT: Euphoric. Getting up there with these two doing something I love is something that I wouldn’t pass up for anything.

ALF: I genuinely love nothing more than playing live on stage, as the adrenaline kick I get from it is like nothing else. We’re very energetic and throw everything into our live show, and if I come off stage and haven’t broken into an intense sweat, then I’ve not done my job properly.

We work incredibly hard up there, and we give it absolutely everything we have every single time. 

Now that ‘Asbestos’ has been released, what are your plans?

ALF: We’re writing a lot at the moment, so we plan to continue writing, recording, and pressing on with releasing new music. We put out our first track of the year back in February, and we vowed that we would make this the year to release a lot more music into the world.

We’re definitely sticking to that, so expect to hear a lot of new material from us before 2020 arrives. 

And lastly, what is the band’s long-term aim?

ALF: We want to make this our living, you know. We live for this band, and for the music we create together, so we’ll continue to grow our fan base, play lots of shows, release music, and try to push the boundaries of what is possible as independent artists in today’s industry. 

JAKE: To be sponsored by Nando’s.

GRANT: To keep making music that we love, and to create experiences with people who come and see us.

‘ASBESTOS’ – THE LATEST SINGLE FROM GLASS PEAKS – IS AVAILABLE NOW VIA THESE BLOODY THIEVES RECORDS, AND FURTHER INFO ON THE BAND CAN BE FOUND THROUGH THE FOLLOWING SITES:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

INSTAGRAM

YOUTUBE

 

 

 

 

 

THE GULPS

The Gulps band photo

THE GULPS (from l-r): Francesco Buffone (guitar), Raoul Khayat (drums), Harry All (vocals), Charlie Green (guitar), Simon Mouchard (bass)

INTERVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN

PHOTO by KOVACS LASZLO

Based in London, but hailing from different parts of Europe and the Middle East, The Gulps are a five-piece united in giving listeners an explosive, highly-energetic rock n’ roll sound that effectively reflects their diverse origins.

Having performed well-received sets at venues and festivals across much of the UK, the band brought out their debut EP, entitled ‘In The Kings House‘, this April, which was produced by legendary producer and Killing Joke guitarist Martin “Youth” Glover, and has so far had an overwhelmingly positive response.

The quintet recently spoke to me about all of this, and much more.

How did the band first get together?

The Gulps come from different parts of Europe and the Middle East. Charlie and Harry came from Spain to find their music spirit in London. They met Francesco, Simon, and Raoul at music school, and decided to form the band.

The boys united over a mutual appreciation for high velocity interests that held music at its core, and together, they realised this explosive energy through the formulation of The Gulps.

How did the name The Gulps come about? 

The aim of the project was to create a sensory experience for listeners that stimulated a multi-faceted reaction across the body. The act of “gulping” is the physical manifestation of such an event, and so we decided to make it our namesake.

What are the band’s main musical influences? 

Each band member brings their own geographical discography with them to influence the sound of The Gulps. Primarily, the boys draw upon their inspiration of rock’s household names, such as The Strokes, The Rolling Stones, and The Clash, to ground their compositions.

This appreciation, however, only acts as a foundation, paying homage to sounds of the past, as The Gulps reignite the industry with their own dissertation on what it is to be rock-‘n’-roll in 2019.

What would you say was your approach to songwriting?

As with the conception of a painting, story, character, or dance, our songs begin at the intersection of experimentation and inspiration.

Usually, one of the boys starts with a riff that is presented to the rest of the band as an invitation to create, and it is from there that the creative unconscious is called upon to lyrically inform the poetry of the song and bridge The Gulps with the listeners.

What inspires the band lyrically?

We are influenced by what we see every day, both at a personal and societal level. It is finding the drama in even the most seemingly mundane acts that compels us to write.

In April, you brought out a debut EP, entitled ‘In The Kings House’. How was the recording process for that?

The EP was recorded over three days in The Doghouse Studios, a Martin “Youth” Glover establishment, which is located in a serene oasis just outside of London, and to make music in such a naturally contemplative environment added to the success of the production, alongside the irreplaceable guidance of Martin and Michael Rendall.

And how has the response been to the release up to now? 

The amount of support we have received from everyone since the release has been amazing, and this is indicative of the overwhelming amount of votes we received for the Mad Cool festival, where we won a spot to play thanks to the contributions of all our fans far and wide.

Having played at venues across the UK and France, as well as festivals such as Camden Rocks and the Truck Festival, the band recently performed at the Mad Cool festival in Spain, alongside such big musical names as Noel Gallagher, Iggy Pop, and The Cure. That must have been quite an experience for you all.

It’s true that we had not played alongside such renowned names before, and this was a different experience for all of us, for sure, but to be honest, whether it is a small venue in Chalk Farm or a massive stage in Madrid, it is all about the vibe and the music.

We have played in super intimate spaces before, where the relationship between the music and the crowd has been as moving as playing larger venues. It is of course a nice feeling to be considered for festivals that showcase the big names as well, but what is more satisfying is fulfilling the concept of The Gulps.

And how is it being on stage overall?

The energy felt whilst being on stage is almost like you are operating on another frequency, as time seems to go at a different pace, and we suppose that’s where that expression about time flying when you are having fun comes from.

Maybe it is not like this all the time, but when you are really doing it right, it feels like you are flying.

What are your plans for the near future?

We are thinking to record an album with Martin at the beginning of October, also we’re going to try and get on festival bills around the world.

And lastly, what is the band’s long-term aim?

Well ultimately, the aim is like we said, to create an overall sensory experience for audiences, and that is a forever ongoing process that will never be wholly satisfied.

If we had to speak in milestones, then recording an album and having the opportunity to play to different crowds around the world would obviously be aims, however that is not the purpose of The Gulps.

The Gulps EP Cover

‘IN THE KINGS HOUSE’ – THE DEBUT EP FROM THE GULPS – IS AVAILABLE NOW VIA YOUTH SOUNDS, AND FURTHER INFO ON THE BAND CAN BE FOUND THROUGH THE FOLLOWING SITES:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

INSTAGRAM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SOBRIQUET

Sobriquet band photo

SOBRIQUET (from l-r): Tom Green-Morgan (guitar), Michael Chilton (bass), Ludovico “Ludo” Fahey (vocals), Jake Askew (guitar), James Turner (drums/vocals)

INTERVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN

Describing themselves as “the Steel City’s bastard child“, Sobriquet have taken their home city of Sheffield‘s rock and metal scene by storm in recent years with an organic and relentless post-hardcore sound, which has also won them a devoted following across much of the UK.

Having recently unveiled ‘Eros‘ – their new single – the five-piece’s frontman, Ludovico “Ludo” Fahey, spoke to us about that, the band’s journey up to now, supporting the likes of Black Peaks and King810, and much more.

How did the band initially form?

We all went to uni in Sheffield, and we all just gravitated towards each other out of a mutual love for all things heavy, but also a bit odd.

How did the name Sobriquet come about?

We each came up with a list of five names that we liked, attempted to vote on them, and then realised it was a completely pointless exercise after about two hours of arguing and getting nowhere.

I think it was our drummer James who suggested Sobriquet next, and we had basically given up by that point, so we were all like, “Yeah, sure, whatever, let’s just go with that“, and I was happy to go with it at the time, because it’s a word I heard in The Mars Volta song once, but it’s definitely grown on me further ever since!

What would you say was your approach to songwriting?

When the band began, it was me who would write the majority of the music, mostly by hacking away at riffs and putting them together on computer until they became something resembling songs, and we would then chip in on the lyrics together, but these days, it’s a whole lot more collaborative and organic, as we tend to jam out our new ideas in practice rooms a lot more than we used to.

Writing lyrics is still the hardest thing in the world to do though, as it takes forever compared to the rest of the process.

What inspires the band lyrically?

I can’t speak for everyone in the group, because most of us have contributed lyric ideas at some point, but for me, it always starts with a particular image or phrase that gets stuck in my head that I just want to find a way to express.

The trigger that inspires it could be anything – something I’ve read or watched, the news, a dream or nightmare etc, and often, it’s only when I get to the end of something that I realise, “Oh, I’ve written a song about [insert song topic here]“, so it’s a bit of a Rorschach test, basically!

You recently brought out a new single, entitled ‘Eros’. How was the recording process for that?

We’d been playing it for over a year by the time it came to record the song, so you can imagine the relief we felt when we’d finally got it all finished! We could play it in our sleep by the time we entered the studio, but it gave us a chance to sit back and approach the song from a different perspective, which was nice.

The only problem is living up to the studio version when we’re playing it live now that people can actually hear how it’s supposed to sound!

And how has the response been to the track up to now?

Our fans seem to really have taken a liking to it! It’s something a bit more polished than our earlier material, and I’d like to think it is a bit more of an indication of where we’re heading in the future.

It’s not as straightforward a direction as this song might imply however, but definitely something a bit more refined, and we just hope everyone is ready for what is coming next!

The band recently performed at the Tramlines festival in their home city, and have also supported the likes of Black Peaks and Palm Reader. How were they as experiences?

As enormous fans of both of those bands, the times supporting them were both absolute “Holy crap, we’re onto something here” moments. Not only were they great shows, each was an absolute milestone, letting us know how far we’ve come since we started.

When we supported King810 last December, it was just absolutely surreal, “Here’s a band I saw in an arena supporting Slipknot, and we’re playing a show with them tonight? Nahhh mate, you’re pulling my leg, as if!

Since it’s our hometown, Tramlines always feels like a bit of a victory lap whenever we play a show there, and it’s especially great, because sometimes in the middle of the day at a festival like that, you’re playing to an audience who have little concept of the world in which our niche little band occupies, so it’s fun to see if we can either win them over or terrify the shit out of them!

And how is it overall playing live on stage?

In equal measures exhausting, sweaty, cathartic, and ludicrous amounts of fun.

When the makeup comes on, it’s like I’ve been given a license to go absolutely fucking feral for 30-45 minutes at a time, it’s terrific. The only thing is – because I’m so short – there is a constant danger of being smacked in the head by wayward instruments, which in fact has happened more times than I’d care to admit.

What are your plans for the near future?

We have just got out of the studio, having recorded three brand-new singles! We’ve not quite got a release schedule in mind for them yet, but hopefully we can get something out by the end of this year.

We are just so stoked on them, we can’t wait to get them out, as soon as they are ready!

And lastly, what is the band’s long-term aim?

I suppose it would be nice to quit our day jobs at some point, so we can do this full- time, but in this economy? It’s not happening. We’re keeping our goals short-term and just slightly realistic at the moment, like getting a slot at a nice festival or something. Arctangent or 2000Trees, maybe?

Sobriquet Single Cover

‘EROS’ – THE LATEST SINGLE FROM SOBRIQUET – IS AVAILABLE NOW, AND FURTHER INFO ON THE BAND CAN BE FOUND THROUGH THE FOLLOWING SITES:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE

FACEBOOK

TWITTER

INSTAGRAM

YOUTUBE

 

VICTORY LANE – ‘Barebones’

(Standby Records)

Victory Lane EP Cover

REVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN

Last year, four-piece Victory Lane impressed critics and fans alike with their debut EP, ‘Louder Than Words‘, which was an effective showcase for the band’s fresh take on the pop-punk genre.

With that already under their belts, the rapidly-rising collective have now unveiled ‘Barebones’, its eagerly-anticipated follow-up.

Comprising of six tracks, the quartet recorded the new offering under the guidance of esteemed producer Romesh Dodangoda, who has worked in the past with the likes of Bring Me The Horizon and Don Broco.

Just Personal‘ opens proceedings by consistently being catchy, highly-energetic, and upbeat. At times, the sound can be rather generic, but it is a real toe-tapper, and certainly does its job of hooking the listener in.

Following track ‘Life Past 98‘ pretty much follows in the same sonic vein, at least to begin with.

However, the vocal delivery of frontman Dan Lamb is evidently more heartfelt, and he does a fantastic job of conveying the deeply personal and emotional lyrical subject matter of his father passing away when Dan was just a teenager, and what he felt over what undoubtedly was a very traumatic period.

As the song progresses, the tempo lowers significantly, with the guitar riffs becoming heavier yet slower-paced, and the drum beats becoming louder yet gentler at the same time.

Another highlight of the EP is provided by fourth number ‘Happy Sad‘, which with a sound that switches effortlessly between jolly and something altogether more sombre, as well as lyrics which deal frankly with Dan being in a state of emotional limbo, brought on by a reliance on anti-depressants, is a true reflection of how the four-piece are maturing, both musically and as human beings.

Overall, ‘Barebones‘ initially comes across as an average pop-punk release, but as things move forward, the band are able to draw the listener in with a well-crafted combination of songs that will leave them feeling a whole range of emotions.

TOP TRACK: ‘Life Past 98’

(3.5/5)