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A review of...
Halogen Days EP by Vassals
Brooklyn three piece Vassals latest EP (their first release since 2015) is a muddled up joy of a thing. Dabbling in glam, rock, pop and offbeat prog it's a nice sampler of the band's wide ranging influences. Opener "Sea Spells" is like something from Field Music's Plumb, managing to be both complicated and resolutely engaging in equal measure. This is followed by "Moonless" which borders on anthemic but turns into something far more raw and reckless (Shay Spence's impassioned vocal turn is particularly impressive).
On "SoHo" the band throw in some contemplative, atmospheric sections amongst the noisier, pogo inducing chorus where Spence sings "Im swimming in a sea of light" with great spine tingling gusto. It's a sound that brings back memories of the 1990s but not one that's been done to death.
"Ghostwood" is a weird one, and probably the one most likely to polarise an audience. At the start it kind of sounds like The Bee Gees (eighties Bee Gees not cool Idea era Bee Gees), but as we've seen on the other tracks on this EP it morphs into something altogether different. This time culminating in a tight QOTSA style freak out of guitar, bass and drums.
For many (like me) this will be a quick introduction to the band. But with the little time they've had they've made a great impression.