The Creature Appeal – You Shouldn’t, But I Know You Probably Will (Review)

Local indie band, The Creature Appeal, from Birmingham released their debut EP in October 2018 which has already had quite a lot of streams on Spotify as well as their debut single having over 6,000 streams alone. They’ve been played on BBC Introducing a fair few times too. Implying that they hope to release new tunes quite soon, I’m interested to see where the band lead too. Indie bands are prominent at the moment which I’ve already exclaimed in a previous review post. 

“Nine” begins with a vibrant melody on guitar that soothes our ears for the EP ahead. The song may be situated within an indie genre as the vocals seem very Liam Fray (The Courteeners) & Van McCann (Catfish & the Bottlemen) but the production of this track feels a bit too bright and in your face to be an indie rock track. It feels a bit more pop-punk orientated. Reaching just after the half way mark, it takes us into a half time groove that really fits the song nicely. Indicating this breakdown means that something big is going to happen, in this songs case; the last chorus (pioneering part of almost every song structure). A full, full of wit track.

A far heavier approach to their songwriting, the riff sounds like a tone that Queens of the Stone Age would play. “Where Will I Find You Tonight?” is a track that symbolises the band’s effort to not just stick a few songs together to make an EP. “We took inspiration from things we had in our everyday lives: heartache, bus rides and nights out. We tried to make these themes consistent throughout the EP to tell a short story about a failing relationship as we wanted the project to be more than just a collection of tracks”. This song is a lot different to the first track and a stand-out one in their discography. Including a fun sample of “You Heard What I Said”, the song keeps you entertained all the time.

“I Need to Know” has a lovely production and the instruments blend together to create a warm, secure environment for the insecurity of the track. Saying that, it feels that the vocals don’t dynamically shift and it feels a bit repetitive after a while. I really like how the bass is doing anything that it wants, it’s free but still melodic. Only thing missing is a memorable hook-line that you will never want to get out your head. “Circular Sunglasses” is a hip, down with the kids kind of track. A tune that fans will be screaming out to the play when you’re playing live. The 4 piece band say they draw influences from the late Viola Beach, Kings of Leon & Arctic Monkeys to list a few. They’re currently unsigned and are currently gigging promoting their latest release. As a whole, the EP is original and filled with versatility. You get to hear the boys rock out a bit, then chill us out with some easy listening melodies. 

Favourite Tracks: Nine, Where Will I Find You Tonight, Circular Sunglasses

Score: 7/10

https://www.facebook.com/TheCreatureAppealBand/

https://www.instagram.com/thecreatureappeal/

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Future Fires – Keep A Secret (Review)

Four-piece indie rock band from Birmingham, Future Fires are full of energy and are ready for anything. Formed in 2017 and serving a wide range of shows across the country, they released their latest single “Keep A Secret” back in October. With drawing influences from The Editors, The Subways and The Killers to name a few, this is a band that you’d be dancing to at big festivals in no time. They call themselves a ‘dark indie’ band and you can tell that from the latest single. It’s moody and something that you wouldn’t expect from an indie group. 

“Keep A Secret” is about trust and not breaking down that barrier. It’s tense and at any moment, you feel that the worst is going to happen. The darkness on the subject of the track is lightened with the wonderful arrangement soaking it all around. With vocals reminding me of early Miles Kane, Adam’s vocals compliments the song perfectly. The instrumentation takes us back to the early noughties of the Arctic Monkeys and Bloc Party era that we all long for to come back. Future Fires are creating the airwaves of what is now 2019, to become nostalgic and longing for the old days. For a band that haven’t been around for that long, they are creating a strong fan base and have definitely got an exciting journey ahead of them.

Score: 3.5/5

http://futurefiresband.com/

https://www.facebook.com/futurefiresband/

Meme Detroit & Institutes live at The Night Owl, Birmingham – 5th May 2018 (Review)

I went to see Meme Detroit with support from Institutes live on the 5th May at the Night Owl. I know both bands personally so it was nice to go and do a feature on both. Institutes brought their theatrical side out with the theme tune of the Avengers signalling their first track. Gareth’s vocals were constantly on point as each song progressed. I know Gaz personally, like I said, and I know how much he likes Star Wars, so I really wasn’t surprised to see a Star Wars mask on the stage while they played, just constantly staring into our souls. With their set featuring tracks like We See Colour which was aggressive, it was nice to hear tracks like Not Alone with the whole arrangement of the song being delicious. I must say, the bass line in the verses for this track is so fragile but delicate. Their stand out track for the show was Golden Egg with the lead guitar going through what seemed like a midi synthesiser pedal, the song had so much power. Top performance from the boys, will definitely be checking them out again for sure. 

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Whereas for Meme, the girl sure does bring attitude to every track the band plays. Meme released her debut album back in 2016 and has been causing quite a stir round the Birmingham music scene for quite a while. With influences drawn from 90’s grunge, 80’s synth pop and indie rock, Meme’s distorted music is big. Her live set included big songs “With You” featuring Love Transcends All Again, a real powerful love song about being in love with “love.” The band, of course, featured the latest release, Soc Med Junkies which is about social media as a whole and how it controls us. I must say, the songs are really quite good, but at the gig, some guitar parts were drowned so much in fuzz and distortion that it was hard to understand the songs fully. Saying that, the band as a whole (Barney Such on Drums) and Ross Adams on bass) created an energy that filled the whole room. Just a shame that I had to leave early.

I asked Meme some questions to get a better feel of what her music/influences involve.

“I was sat aimlessly scrolling one day through my news feeds and suddenly found myself feeling really heavy-hearted and down. I realised it was due to all the negative sh** that I was reading and watching on my screen. It was a bit of a light bulb, “what the f*** am I doing?” moment so I switched off my phone, grabbed my guitar and notebook and started writing to put my time to a much happier/more positive activity.”

 

“Thanks! Yeah, the 80s thing came from a composition briefing for a film soundtrack. I’d never really done anything like that before so decided to give it a go and ended up really liking what came out. So much so, we released it. Influence wise, it’s hard to say as my influences range from all sorts. Due to my family’s generational hand me down box of vinyls: Bands/artists such as The Beatles, Bowie, Bob Marley, MJ, Foo Fighters, to At the drive in, Radiohead, Smashing Pumpkins, Death from above. I’m well into dance and old skool hip hop also. If something stirs an emotion in me, whatever the genre, I’ll dig it. Guitar writing wise, however, I guess I could probably say my biggest influences are Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood, Billy Corgan and although she’s a bassist, Pixies’ Kim Deal’s simplistic yet genius playing style inspired me from a very young age.”

 

What has been your favourite gig you’ve played so far? What’s the weirdest gig you’ve played?
“My favourite gig so far has to be when we played the main stage at Silverstone.
It was just an awesome buzzing atmosphere. The Sun was setting in the distance and in that moment as we were playing out, it just felt so right. It was almost like an out-of-body experience ha. The weirdest gig I’ve played is probably The Treehouse sessions in Birmingham. I wasn’t sure what to expect as when you get there, you have to go through someone’s house and you get taken into the back garden. You go through this wooden door at the bottom of the garden (it was like Narnia!) and suddenly you’re in this full on production room with monitor screens and crew everywhere. Then you get taken through to the performance area and it’s literally a tiny treehouse with a gorgeous intimate seating area & bar below for the audience. The whole thing was filmed for their channel with an interview that took place in this ace yurt. It actually ended up being more awesome than weird in the end!”