A cut above

Life is full of the never quites. The older you get, the more those never quites seem to pop up and slap you in the face. You never quite got that dream job; you never quite went out and did all those wild, reckless things that you thought you would; you never quite got the girl/guy; you never quite lived to your potential because, usually, life happens and it tends to shit triumphantly over your plans from a great height.

Above Them won’t feel that sense of aching regret when they’ll look back at their musical career in years to come; they are a band, who quite literally have “put their hearts” into making music, and by Christ, it shows.

After quitting their jobs last summer they have: thrown caution to the wind by travelling across America’s Mid-West (and nearly being killed in the process by a tyre blowout on a freeway); attracted the attention of Deep Elm and managed to get themselves on the bill of the incredibly prestigious The Fest, in Gainesville, Florida.

Following up from their solid debut “...But Inside I’m Dancing”, this release picks up where their last left off: another impressive, hook laden EP which shimmers with promise and accomplishment. With their sound straddling US gruff bands such as Hot Water Music and Against Me, with some more home grown influences in the form of Kids Near Water, Spy Vs Spy and the much missed and loved Dugong, the band have amassed quite a following for themselves already, and with this EP, things are set to only improve.

“You Think You’ve Changed The World” all peppered with cowbell, sweat and urgency is a throat grab of an opener; slowly ramping its way up into a climax of crashing drums and clattering symbols: it is pure, joyous one hand in the air, one hand on the heart track which leaves you wanting to sing along until your insides combust. The whole EP continues in this triumphantly impassioned and whole-heartedly likable, if not utterly lovable vein: as a package, this is as strong as they come.

Above Them are vitally important to the UK music scene: hooks that you could hang the world on, choruses that make your throat tear and a sense of earnestness and integrity that are lacking from most bands; this is one of the most essential releases to come out of the UK for some time.