ARTIST: SLOW BLOOD

TITLE: EP 1

LABEL: SELF-RELEASED

RATING: 8/10 

WORDS: BECTON SIMPSON

Getting your first EP produced by Rob Jones of Idlewild is always a good start, and that’s exactly what Edinburgh based trio Slow Blood have done. Following in the wake of their 2017 singles ‘Demon Speed’ and ‘Prayer’, the groovy alt-rockers finally dropped four new tracks on the world on September 28th which, according to the band’s website, is a “study of life, death and the dangers of unwavering belief.”

Unsurprisingly, the production values are high. The record is well mixed, with a clarity and punch that leaves the listener excited and wanting more, titled simply, ‘EP 1’, perhaps insinuating that there is more to come.

“…By allowing the public a part in the record there’s a hope that catharsis will bring healing. “

Lead single ‘Cut Palms’ was released Aug 31st accompanied by a simple but fun little video. It’s driven by the opening guitar riff, which then transforms into a psychadelic high pitched wailing, with the melodic and catchy bass line perfectly juxtaposing the frequencies. The energy is kept up throughout, with a tense middle section that makes your heart race a little before crashing into the surprisingly catchy chorus. It’s one of those insidious melodies that gets stuck in your head after the first listen. ‘Cut Palms’ is a great start to the EP and leads us neatly into ‘Prism’. Here, the bass is again prominent and important, lending it a retro, spacey New Order vibe at times. There’s definitely something ‘classic’ sounding about this track which is hard to pinpoint. The band describe themselves as “three pieces of a goth pop puzzle” and that’s surprisingly accurate. Their music is both dark and upbeat in the same way as someone like The Smiths were, with a post-punk edge amongst the hooks and upbeat chords.

‘Feed Me Alive’’s delicate guitar riff, soaring chorus and melodious inflections brings back memories of some early Taking Back Sunday stuff, and it’s the impressive rhythm section that holds ‘Skin And Bone’ together. It’s tight, punchy, and perfectly fits with the off-kilter and dissonant riff. It’s easy to hear grunge and punk influences here, along with some heavier indie. It has buckets of attitude and the vocals are amongst the strongest and ballsiest of the collection, making it stand out as one of the best tracks of the four.

“a captivating journey that speaks volumes of what this band is capable of.”

The band held a celebratory release show in their hometown on 21st September and we can expect big things to come from these guys. These four songs sound like they’d be hella to hear live so we can only imagine what the rest of their set would be like. Don’t be fooled by the word ‘pop’. While they’ll surely end up being popular, and their songs are catchy and infectious, they still pack a hell of a punch. For a band only just starting out, this is an excellent debut and we can’t wait to hear what they come up with next.

 

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