You can’t go far without tripping over straightforward rock bands at the moment. The unsigned scene is rife with them and most are generally making the same sort of noise. Just some are better than others or the right people see them and take the associated chances. One such band deserving of this status is Soul Remover, providing gritty good quality hard rock in buckets.
Heads You Win, Tails You Don’t has the Glasgow outfit bring a fresh offering of tunes. As uncompromising straightforward rock goes, it’s great. Much like bands such as The King Lot, the EP has you scratching your head, begging the question “Why are these guys not huge?”
With the scratchy, chugging opening riff on “Mr Mayhem”, the five-piece are intent to draw you in right from the word “go”. It’s a theme which crops up through the EP, a band knowing their sound and sticking to it without much deviation from the blueprint. The entire package is tight and cohesive and much like their influences, the songs can be lengthy but manage not to draw things out longer than necessary; finding that delicate balance.
Although they pull no punches, they do amble into a sludgier and bluesier territory with “Salvation”, reminiscent of early Slash’s Snakepit whilst maintaining their own identity. There’s a weighty bass line on offer here as well, locking in with the drums to bring a slower yet leviathan quality to it.
The snarling and rasping vocals (from an individual dubbed “Singer”) are fairly unique, showing a wide variation between the songs and handling everything with ease. Certainly during his drawling vocals you can hear similarities with other singers and it brings a grimy and grungy tone to the tracks. As for highlights, it’s hard to pick one song of the four because they all have their own qualities which makes them all stick in your brain.
There’s a complexity to keep you engaged but at the same time, the music isn’t turgid, keeping matters straight to the point. Soul Remover have definitely upped the ante from the first EP and whilst there may have been a wait, it’s been worth it.
Heads You Win, Tails You Don’t is out now!