Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Groan - Highrospliffics (EP Review)

Highrospliffics cover art

Album Type: EP
Date Released:23/03/2015
Label: Self Released

Highrospliffics – CD Track Listing

Run Out Of Fucks
Witchfinder General Finder
March Of The Druids
Buried In Leather

Groan are:

Mazzereth - Vocals
Lindsay Hamilton - Guitars & Backing Vocals
Leigh Jones - Bass & Backing Vocals
Zel Kaute - Drums & Backing Vocals 

Review

London's Groan may have produced one of the best EP titles of all time. It’s a name so ridiculous yet so inventive that one would absolutely never tire of reading it. Surely such majestic titling will have equally as grandiose chops to back it up?

The four tracks on offer feature a bevy of ‘old school’, blues infused riffs. ‘Run Out Of Fucks’ kicks things off as they mean to go on, pounding drums and low, brooding bass being joined by a big old wall of guitar feedback. Mazzereth’s vocals kick in and goddamn, they really wail, in a similar vein to 70’s heroes like Bruce Dickinson, soaring, almost operatic highs. There’s a pleasantly rolling tempo, then a breakdown with some epically blazing guitar work, before the song fades into weirdness.

‘Witchfinder General Finder’ features some excellently tight instrumentation amongst the bluesy 70’s worshipping licks. Leigh Jones’s bassline moves organically, and Zel Kaute’s drums are intuitive and feature a lot of interesting movement, especially during the drum solo break that’s intercut by big, statement chords. There’s another guitar solo that edges close to spacy, psychedelic territory, in a good way. ‘March Of The Druids’ is arguably the least realised, not having much in the way of stand out personality compared to the other tracks. Although it’s ballsy and beefy, it could probably use a little more cowbell.

But Groan definitely save the best for last, in the shape of ‘Buried In Leather’. The sleazy main riff slaps you across the face with a cow-hide glove, and would definitely induce some dipping-headbanging live. The track ups the ante into a driving, breakneck riff that carries the song to its end. When Mazzereth asserts “heavy metal thunder/it’s the only way” you can’t help but be convinced as things finish with a drum freakout and plenty of cymbals.

You can pick up ‘Highrospliffics’ for free via Groan’s BandCamp, but for riffs of this quality, put your hand in your pocket.

Written by Jay Hampshire

Thanks to Cat Jones at Southern Cross PR for the promo.

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