Melodramas ‘Kids’ EP

So, Melodramas are my new favourite band. Full stop.

This EP – ‘Kids’ – is pumped to bursting point with inventive instrumentation and glorious melodic hooks, reigning in so many influences that the fact that they’re impossible to pin down to any one (sub) genre puts a smile of satisfaction on my regular, bored face. The downright success of this EP makes me feel like I’ve personally, somehow, got one up on the rest of the world. That’s how satisfying it is.

Formed in 2008, Melodramas have had an unusually acclaimed yet low-key start to their career. The British four-piece have received plenty of praise (winning the ‘Showcase’ competition with just their third ever show), and found fans in Taylor Hawkins and David Johansson (New York Dolls). Yet that hype has remained rather hushed, with the band failing to make a mark on the indie radar. Until now that is.

For this new ‘Kids’ EP, the band has teamed up with big-dog producer Sam Williams (Plan B, Supergrass), who has produced these four songs to perfection. But is not the perfect production that makes ‘Kids’ so stunning, but Melodramas pristine songwriting. The opening title-track is an energetic slice of garage-post-punk, with an infectious chorus, an accomplished guitar solo, and a principle riff that plays like Arctic Monkey’s ‘Don’t Sit Down ‘Cause I Moved Your Chair’. That central hook, in conjunction with the snippets of surf rock and eerie, sonic noises bring to mind the classic Space Mountain ride soundtrack from Disneyland! The guitar parts and extra, theatrical instrumentation of ‘Elephant’ is rather like My Chemical Romance at their rockiest, while the psychedelic bridge must have been inspired by The Choral. Lively stuff.

‘Betelgeuse’, which features Gaz Coombes from Supergrass on backing vocals, is indie with a pop-rock core. The fact that it’s all over the place – with clapping, piano, layered surf rock, a scorching solo – makes for music that is both eccentric and hugely enjoyable, à la Stars and Sons. Closer ‘Three Crosses’ is the highlight, with the guitars flipping between indie jangle and the kind of progressive guitar riffs that ska-punk band RX Bandits peddle. This songs really vibes off The Cure’s ‘Lovecats’.

Frontman Matt Woolway’s voice is impressive in its ability to switch from poppy melodies to a sexy punk-rock snarl. His ear for a catchy hook is astounding, and is undoubtedly what makes the songs so memorable. I’ve already mentioned the guitars a fair bit, which erratically flit from punk riffs and indie jangle, to surf-rock echoes. However, the bass needs a particular mention. It is one of those instruments that rarely gets a chance to flourish in indie-rock, but within Melodramas it is the crucial ingredient – the intelligent basslines, whether brooding, pompous, or punk-rock, pushing the tracks to brilliance.

With ‘Kids’, Melodramas have crafted an EP worthy of greatness, with genre-hopping music that encompasses the best of indie, punk-rock, emo, pop, and surf-rock. I may have been pretty damn gushy in this review, but believe me when I say that not one gush has been undue.


Originally published by AAA Music here


~ by cliveparisrozario on March 5, 2012.

One Response to “Melodramas ‘Kids’ EP”

  1. Totally agree. Excellent new band. Saw them at The Great Escape. got the EP. Time to tell EVERYONE…

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