THE RICHTER COLLECTIVE
4.5 rating out of 5.0
Squarehead is a 3-piece band from Dublin with what could be described as distinct sound but one which certainly has its roots in the hot-rod/surfer’s pop-rock era of such bands as the Beach Boys. There is also a slight grunge feel to it and some hints at a ska influence, particularly in the bass-lines.
‘Yeah Nothing’ is the band’s debut album having previously released a few smaller projects, so there will already have been some expectation as to what this album will deliver. However it’s fair to say that this album will easily live up to expectations. It kicks off with ‘Midnight Enchilada’ where you hear all those elements mentioned above come together immediately, very much setting you up for the rest of this 12-track album. It’s the vocals and backing vocals of this song that give it’s surfer rock-like quality and the drums very much follow that pattern as well, it’s really only when the bass guitar comes into the mix with that ska-like groove that you hear why this band’s sound is so special.
So having established this sound with Track 1, the band has a foundation which they continue to build on throughout the album, through some little guitar licks, riffs and solos, most noticeably in ‘Axes of Love’, ‘Fear your Face’ and ‘The Abandoned Sea’. This is essentially a pop-rock band but that’s not to say the Dublin trio don’t have a little bit of fire in their bellies. ‘Circle’, which is Track 11 on the album, is a prime example of this, particularly in the slightly cracked vocals in the chorus. They maintain that original sound that they had before, but that little feature gives this track a nice little edge.
Let’s face it, bands have always either tried to revive or at least to incorporate elements of older genres of music in the creation of their own original style, but Squarehead is a band that does it very naturally and very effectively. A lot of students even today would still listen to bands like The Beach Boys and the Kinks ,but Squarehead have added something a little bit different to that sound and they’ve very much made it their own. They’re young, they have a huge amount potential and I’m sure they have a very bright future ahead of them!
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