Album Review: Simmer – Yellow Streak EP

Drenched in a wave of distortion and ambience comes Simmer and their latest offering – ‘Yellow Streak’. On first listen you may not think its one of the best EPs of the year so far, but you’ll be wrong. Over the course of 14 minutes, the Cheshire four-piece provide an effective blend of melancholy emo and subtle shoegaze wrapped in an abrasive ball of punk-like energy.

‘Yellow Streak’ welcomes us in the form of ‘Douse’ with its racing, washed out guitars and urgent drum work giving a juxtaposition to their haunting vocals. Whereas ‘Head Trip’ keeps up the momentum with its thriving drums, smooth harmonies and punk-ish riffs.

‘Laying Odds’ proves to be a sharper effort which pinpoints Simmer’s soundclash of grunge, emo and shoegaze. It kicks off in an relentless fashion with stabbing guitars and introverted vocals, before easing into a more catharic instrumentation. A thrilling and captivating number that is fuses the quarter’s mix of styles in an effective manner.

The title track closes out this short offering in a laid back manner. With its drawn out guitars and overall sombre tone, it doesn’t have the same urgency that earlier tracks had yet Julius Schiazza reverb-laden vocals rescues the mesmerizing character that is consistent throughout ‘Yellow Streak’.

Although you may find yourself disengaged when listening to ‘Yellow Streak’, I assure you that you will be giving this repeated spins. Whilst some may dismiss Simmer of being just another band part of the grunge/emo/shoegaze crossover, others will eat it up as these four songs shows a band with intent and with a purpose. Sure it’s covered a haze of reverb and atmospheric tones, but at its core is a punk band that is willing to embrace, and effciently use, other elements in a compelling fashion.

5/5

‘Yellow Streak’ EP by Simmer is out now on Dog Knights Productions.

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Words by Sean Reid (@SeanReid86)

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