By I Remember Tapes
Winchester four-piece I Remember Tapes release three track EP 'C45,' a mix of spiky indie riffs, lo-fi fuzz, and rock guitars.
EP opener 'All I Know' is energetic indie-rock with an emphasis on the rock, and a handful of sharp hooks. One such hook, is a hitching guitar line that narrows to an impossible-to-ignore point, which will get lodged like shrapnel inside your head. Similarly, the lead-up to the chorus takes a backdrop of slick, rumbling drumbeats and cuts them up with wickedly sharp riffs, in an attention-grabbing contrast.
However, as soon as 'All I Know' hits the chorus, it all falls apart, as I Remember Tapes mistakenly think that layers of broken glass riffs, is dramatic. Actually, in this instance, all those harsh riffs bristling aggressively out of your speakers, is just uncomfortable to listen to. Scouring away a few layers, or taking off some of that abrasive edge, would have ensured the whole of 'All I Know' was an enjoyable, indie-rock helter-skelter, with riffs that claw for your attention, rather than make your ears hurt.
Thankfully, the other two tracks, 'Cold' and 'All I Know' both boast fantastic choruses. In the case of 'All I Know,' this takes the form of a blast of snarling guitars, that feel particularly invigorating after the stop-start verses. Frontman Tom Ferry ensures this riotous chorus makes an even stronger impression on the listener, by picking up the tempo during the pre-chorus build up, ensuring 'Indecisive' has your full attention ready for when the riffs kick in.
With the epic-tinged riffing of 'Cold,' I Remember Tapes prove that they can deliver choruses of crashing, multi-layered guitars, without any unpleasant edge, ala 'All I Know.' Tom Ferry's vocals are a perfect match for the soaring guitars, as he hollers out those big notes to his own, stylishly stomping rhythm, making 'Cold' one dramatic arc of sound that'll both sweep you along, and get stuck in your head.
The verses follow suit, and are catchy and urgent in equal measures. A skittering backing beat keeps the song hurrying along, while a perfectly formed guitar line of pulsing chords and hooky slide-guitar, shimmies through the verses. That slide-guitar note in particular, will be impossible to remove from your frontal lobe.
I Remember Tapes brings a splash of urgency to 'C45' with 'Cold,' and it's easily the best song on the EP.
'C45' has spiky indie guitars aplenty, but is actually more enjoyable when I Remember Tapes break out the noisier, rock and roll riffs. 'Cold' is a heady, indie-rock stomp that deserves to be heard and, together with the harder-rocking chorus of 'Indecisive' it just might convince you that I Remember Tapes have the makings of a great rock band.