Monday, 13 September 2010

British Brains
Rating: 4.5/5

"Some people never got over 'Nam, or the night their band opened for Nirvana... I guess I never really got over Charlie" says John Cusack in High Fidelity. Well, I never really got over Vex Red. And, as luck would have it, neither did RIBS. Indeed, I wonder if 'British Brains' is a reference to Vex and Cooper Temple Clause, for it's definitely those Brits whose heads RIBS are mining for influences. Taking the Vex template of Silverchair-meets-Nine Inch Nails, they infuse it with the space-rock musings of Failure and marry it to an original voice in frontman Keith Freund; the results are nothing short of spine-tinglingly good.

In fact, my only criticism of this EP is its comparative brevity; just as you're getting into the swing and pace of the tracks, the collection is fading out on 'Queen of Hearts'. In particular, the juggernaut rock assault of 'Even' and 'Brains Out', the first two tracks, pass by in such a sonic maelstrom that you're left restraining yourself from clicking 'back' (if you're on iTunes), or pressing 'rewind' (if you're listening on CD).

The highlight for my money is 'Brains Out', though 'Silencer', the quiet foil to the openers is a close second, melting into a rushing flood of fuzz distortion and atmospherics at its crescendo. To be honest the standard is consistently very high, but with only five tracks on offer you have to draw a line somewhere.

Absolutely fucking essential.


Have a listen here:

<a href="">British Brains by RIBS</a>

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