Album Review: Deepshade – Everything Popular Is Wrong

Deepshade
Everything Popular is Wrong
Release Date: 25th Septemeber 2015

Wigan trio Deepshade have spent the past 18 months gaining followers, touring their socks off and capturing the attention of the likes of The Guardian, BBC Introducing and more. All of that has been the build up to the release of their debut album ‘Everything Popular Is Wrong’. Their grungy alt-rock sound takes influence from acts such as Nirvana, Queens of the Stone Age and Alice in Chains and is a mixture which they use to bring a fresh take to UK alt-metal. With this first release, the band hope to build on their previous success with 10 stand out tracks.

Heavy with drums, laden with melodic guitars and laced with a funky upbeat tempo, ‘Time’ brings you into the album and its great rhythms keep you listening. Screams are mixed with harmonious vocals with a confident swagger while choruses are quick, catchy and full of chugging riffs. It’s a great opener.

Start stop guitar bring us into ‘The Line’ before runaway guitars rise and fall giving a fast tempo from the off. There is a fast delivery of the pounding beats and crashing cymbals however vocally the delivery is slower, standing out against the music delivered with a nonchalant tone. Meanwhile, ‘Out of Hand’ is calmer and more subdued with mini riffs punctuating the slower, rhythm focussed drums. When the vocals come in, they match the drawn out sounds that are so prominent throughout, all of which feel like they are building to something.

The short guitar strums grab your attention straight away giving ‘Tattoo’ a commanding edge which is softened by the melody which dances around the protruding bass line and intermittent beats. It is a quieter opening to ‘Haven’t Said A Word’ with intricate guitar plucks giving off a country sound which can also be found in the harmony laden vocals. In the choruses, there is a shift as this one becomes heavier, vocals are louder and screamed, guitars are fast, fuzzy and demanding on your ears while drums are heavier than before. It’s a long track which features a middle eight of quiet moment interrupted by fast riffs and pounding drums, the sounds which play us out.

‘Bring The Axe Down’ is more dramatic in its sound, opening with yo-yoing guitar chords backed up by a drum beat constant in its time-keeping before choruses of descending strums, crashing cymbals, harmonious backing vocals and a drawn out main vocal give this a more epic feel. It is a calmer opening to ‘Lowlights’ with little melodic riffs before things really kick in with grungier, fuzzy guitar and a thumping drum beat. In the verses, things subside as flowing melodies are accompanied by the most harmonious vocals found on the album so far, the choruses maintain that chilled out vibe albeit with quicker drums and a faster tempo to the guitar.

Dancing notes on the guitar open ‘The Blood, The Mud, The Tears’ before soft vocals and a muffled drum are brought in. It is the quietest opening of the lot and throughout things stay that way even when the drums are given more gusto and the vocals reach a shouted apex, they are still delivered carefully and cautiously.

From the first notes you feel like you are running to keep up with ‘Chairman’ and its pounding beats followed swiftly by a rapid percussion rhythm. Vocals are much the same as words, notes and sentences roll into one long verse, something that distracted me from what is otherwise a decent track musically.

Album closer, ‘Sad Sun’ is much more threatening with dank, dirty guitar lines blurred around the edges for added grunge effect. The chugging bass and guitar sit well alongside a beat which is intermittent yet constant in its arrival. The vocals are full of confidence and laced with malice as lyrically we have darker themes matching the tone perfectly. It is a long final track which flits between drawn out, commanding verses and the heavy rock of the choruses, it is a combination that plays out this debut rock album brilliantly.

Check out the single ‘Out Of Hand’ below:

To find out more about Deepshade visit their Facebook page, their Soundcloud page or you can follow them on Twitter – @DeepShadeMusic

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