It’s brave move to open a release with a spoken word passage, especially for a band who are barely out of the starting blocks in terms of their career, but Scum come in with such confidence on their second EP – and a semi-pretentiousness – that it makes the listener wonder what else they’ve got up their collective sleeve. “The primal scream of the modern team”, sneers a very natural sounding voice, before being particularly scathing of modern TV and its watchers who “do not see what they need”. It all sounds very jaded for a band whom, at the time of recording, appear to have a combined age that’s less than a third of Jello Biafra’s own.
What would happen if members of various Leeds-based hardcore and noise-rock bands came together in one unrelenting outfit? Something not far short of a musical armageddon would likely be the result. Featuring members of arty noise rock band Cattle and powerviolence/hardcore outfit Ona Snop and sludgers Groak, Hoof Glove are on hand with some aggressive sounds that listeners will either love or hate; sounds which – like Cattle – could possibly clear a room if an audience is less than receptive.
Kasabian are a huge selling band but, much like Elbow, most of their output hovers somewhere between generic radio filler and just plain dull. The idea of a Kasabian covers EP isn’t necessarily one that should excite: if you love Kasabian – for whatever reason – chances are, you’d want to spin the original tunes; if you hate Kasabian, hearing someone else recycling their often forgettable songs probably isn’t anywhere near the top of your priority list.
The fact that Kasabian are a generic radio filling non-entity didn’t deter singer-songwriter Sophia Marshall. The one time Have-Nots vocalist went to school with three members of the band and uses that as a springboard for her first covers EP of 2018. The cryptically titled ‘lin-dah’ finds the Leeds songstress taking three Kasabian songs and remoulding them in her own image. For something which, on paper, sounds less than pleasurable, the results are…impressive to say the least.
On the 2014 EP ‘Animal Fat‘, Take Turns recycled many parts of 90s alt-rock and grunge, serving up cheeky nostalgia by the dustcart load, leaving behind a half dozen Pavement-esque gold sounds guaranteed to please listeners hitting those tricky forties at the time of release. The Leeds slackers brought back youth and exuberance aplenty, showed they could wield a guitar and distortion pedal with the best of ’em, but above all – and this being very much the clincher – never sounded lazy when doing so. The love for those whom influenced Take Turns cut through almost every note, making the release seem as if constructed from more than just dusty hand-me-downs
Cattle’s debut EP was a short and sharp burst of angular noise rock that really stood out among the many great releases of 2013. With such a forthright approach, their musical arrangements were truly impressive, but best of all was the overriding bass sound, which came with so much overdrive it made JJ Burnel’s efforts sound small and made the Melvins more grinding affairs seem non-committal. Not long after that EP, various band members returned to their co-existing noise-rock outfit Super Luxury…and it seemed that Cattle might have been just a one-off experiment. But what an experiment it was!