Ever since the breaking of ‘Silverchair’ with ‘Frog Stomp’ in 1995, we have had a steady succession of heavy alternative acts in this country that have achieved national and even international fame in their time. Especially in this last decade with bands such as ‘Karnivool’, ‘Cog’ & ‘The Butterfly Effect’ coming to the fore and playing a huge influence on a whole generation of young musicians idolising their records. This has I believe, made it hard for new bands of this genre to stand up and have a sound that is uniquely their own, as many fall trap to emulating their idols a little too closely. After a few listens to the disc that is sitting in front of me, I am happy to report this is not the case here.
Right from the moment the first groovy guitar riff of ‘The Baker’ crunches in, backed by the syncopated drums, you find yourself bopping your head almost unconsciously. You can tell you are in for something special here. I am immediately struck by the high quality of this recording, the string arrangement towards the end of ‘The Baker’ is amazing. Ben Bowden’s vocals sound clear and airy, floating on a cloud of melody above the groovy, chunky, math laden riffs being laid down by guitarist Richard Lant. Mark Degebrodt’s drumming is sublime, from big pounding beats with huge Danny Carey’esq rolls, to off beat patterns that carry you the whole way through the record with-out once becoming repetitive or ‘stock’ in anyway. ..but what would the drums be with-out big fat, rolling bass lines? Matt Snow’s contribution is excellent. Tight, fat and a great dirty tone to the bass when needed. No sweeping this giant bass sound under the mix, no his lines stand out crisp and clear always providing perfect complement and groove in their own right.
From the very first line ‘I could’a killed someone’ of ‘The Irrepressible’ you can tell this is the stand-out single of this Ep. Not that this song is unusually good compared to the rest of the disc, not so, each song could stand out on it’s own individually. And that is where the strength of this record lies. Not from one great stand out track, but 5 tracks of solid groove, melody and hooks. I dare you to try and not bop your head along to this record. I dare you. It is just simply not possible. There is just too much groove, great guitar tones, huge hooking choruses, interesting and pounding drum beats for you not to. This is a record these four musicians should be very proud of. The song writing is mature, every song is perfectly crafted, leaving you, by the time the 5 songs are finished, just wanting more.
If you are into any kind of heavy music you will appreciate this record, but if you are into heavy music but not so into heavy vocals, you will absolutely love this record! If you haven’t already checked out ‘Serial Killer Smile’ you can do so on their Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/sksband
The band will be releasing their record ‘The Elephant in The Room’ on the 17th of February at the The Rosemount Hotel. They will be supported by Further Earth, Copious & This Other Eden. This is shaping up to be an excellent launch, for an amazing disc, by a great Perth band that has a bright future. I hope you take the time to check out ‘Serial Killer Smile’ and purchase their debut Ep ‘The Elephant in The Room’, you will not be disappointed.