By Paraffin Alien
Ok, so it's a given, some bands are live bands that can put on a prolific show, but can't quite cut it when it comes to knuckling down and making a good record , whereas there are some, that are bland on stage, yet can come up with the goods for the listeners. Paraffin Alien happen to be the latter. I had the opportunity to see them at the New Roscoe, I was not impressed, but decided to give the record a go and received a big musical slap on the face by the young, progressive-rock four piece from Leeds.
Live set aside; Paraffin Alien break us in with "Prelude" a tense instrumental warming us up for the darker, yet catchier "Derailer," a track that introduces us to the vocalist, who at first appears to lack that 'bite' that conventionally you would expect from this type of song, but is attained later on, and it is revealed that the timidness of the vocalist is actually part of his style and upon reflection, grew on me. Similarly to "Prelude", "Derailer" has that edge to it, that restlessness; it doesn't fully develop until around the third minute, yet it seems like it should do early on. Nonetheless, it kept me listening and made me ponder that this is a band I should take seriously.
Possibly the best track: "Red Page" was impressive early on, with a Dream Theater esque guitar part met with a vocal melody that reminded me of Radiohead/Smashing Pumpkins, a style that is adopted and carried through the enjoyable "Still I Wait" and "Slouch".