Album Review: Puppy – Vol. II

North London three piece Puppy subscribe to the theory that some indie tracks could use a little metal grind, while heavy tracks might work a little better with a more melodic chorus. As such, what you get is a heavy sounding band that knows how to shred, but can deliver a killer indie pop chorus with the best of them.

As my editor says, they’re a kinda mix of Weezer meets Iron Maiden, and though the result is slightly unconventional, by and large they find a likeable balance between their conflicting influences and it plays out enjoyably.

‘Vol. II’ is the second offering from the Londoners and is billed as a mini-album. It kicks off with a doomy mix of indie melodies and crunching riffs on ‘Emtombed’ which has a likeable tilt, especially when Jock Norton nails a superb solo. Stand out track, ‘My Tree’, follows with a similarly chugging riff, but soon mutates into a cool slice of hard edged melodic indie rock with a nice hook and another rocking solo – good stuff guys!

Although they may appear to not take themselves too seriously, they sure know how to write a love song – ‘Arabella’ ticking all the power ballad boxes with its suitably big chorus and a large dose of the epic. They rein things in a little for the closing tracks though, ‘Warm’ offering a fuzzy glow as it rolls comfortably along, real rainy day stay in bed music, before the big riff kicks in á la Smashing Pumpkins . Meanwhile, ‘Here at Home’ is a thread bare slice of melancholy tenderness to round things off.

All in all, it’s good solid stuff from the Puppy boys, showing plenty of variation and an interesting stylistic mix, expect to hear a lot more from them.

4/5

’Vol. II’ by Puppy is out now on August 12th.

Puppy links: Facebook|Twitter|Soundcloud

Words by Edward Layland (@EdwardLayland)

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