Quick and the Dead- 'For The Rhythm'

The suggestion of 'brutal pop music' being the artistic drive of a band may shove images of Westlife covering Job For A Cowboy whilst biting the heads off particularly cute woodland creatures, or... well, Lady Gaga on a standard day having swung by the abattoir. Quick and the Dead have approached this in a slightly different way for their EP, "For The Rhythm". They've seemed to start off with a roasting hot ball of pure noise and sort of whittled it down into a beast that could be accepted by your indie rock fans who like a bit of rough as well as post-hardcore fans who kiss a picture of Katy Perry they keep under their pillow at night. Admittedly, there's a lot of us who do the latter. Either way, you'll find that the weighting of these elements differ throughout.

Opening track 'Get Scared?' feels like QATD have blown the dust off the 'What Would Reuben Do?' manual for nuts-kickingly good introductions. It may be lyrically repetitive in parts but it's only as instrumental in the layering of sound as the crunching riffs that accompany them. This bleeds well into 'Sparks', which still has the fire of this post-hardcore but given the poppy melodies and catchiness you might see from a band like The Swellers- making this the winner of my gold medal on this record. It's a belting little track. 'Carry On Reaper' takes an unexpected indie rock turn with a chorus stuffed full of 'woah-oh'-ing that makes it soar- maybe think a duffed up Blood Red Shoes with a cut lip and torn trousers- before thundering through the close harmonies of 'Savaged'. The low rumbling bass line of the closing title track tells you that they QATD decided to end this journey just as they began- galloping out with guts and glory.

It really must be noted how well tamed they've got the oft unruly beast of noise rock. They can turn it up when it's needed but they also know when to throw in a lull and never overdo the vocals- which can batter you but never lose their sense of purpose. This is a really well put together EP and I'm really looking forward to what Quick and the Dead deliver next.