Mixing rock and progressive edges on their first two records, Welsh trio Godsticks carved out a sound that they could easily build upon. Given the soaring melodies and atmospheres they’ve proved more than capable – particularly on songs like the lovely ‘Withdrawn Was Giveaway’ – it’s hard to work out why they felt they needed a change of direction. Their third release ‘Emergence’ severely cranks up the heavier edges…and the over-riding sound is that of a grungy hard rock with occasional prog-metal quirks. If you like that, that’s fine, but if you actually liked what Godsticks did before, it’s a crushing disappointment. Gone are the clean lead guitars and any neo-prog string bending; gone are the crisp and tinkly melodies and basically anything that made Godsticks worth listening to…and in their place, a bunch of riff heavy, needlessly repetitive dirges.
This EP from Welsh trio The Decoy is chaotic. It’s also quite brilliant. Restless from the outset, this band bring metallic edginess, new wavish quirks, post-hardcore sounds, alongside a dose of noise rock, touches of light reggae and jangly guitar rock together in a way that should appeal to the more open minded prog fan, or the math rock devotee. What they lack in obvious hooks they more than make up for with sheer balls. The results are not going to be for everyone, but we should assume that’s exactly how The Decoy like it.
Following the release of their debut album in 2013, Welsh hard rockers Dead Shed Jokers were praised by UK’s Classic Rock Magazine and picked out as a band whose star was very much on the ascent. Two years on, their self-titled follow up brings the rock in a hugely unsubtle fashion, mixing heavy blues riffs with a truckload of distortion, a post-grungy attitude towards the more angular and a frightening amount of bravado.