Having grabbed our attention late last year with their debut EP, ‘Facade’, Leeds quintet Dire Bloom have wasted no time on delivering a follow-up. EP #2, ‘Seasons’, arrives just over six months on, picking up where ‘Facade’ left off, albeit more raw and subtly intense.
Throughout it’s clear Dire Bloom wear their influences on their sleeve. Opener ‘Bittersweet’ weaves in with plucky guitars before exploding in a Basement-like fashion. Felix Kjåelberg quickly leaves his mark with an impressive vocal display that roars with passion in the chorus.
‘Colour Blind’ combines light, reverb guitar lines with a steady tempo and honest lyrics that is reminiscent of Knuckle Puck. Likewise ‘The Art Of Giving Up’ thrives off bold instrumentation as it pushes to become the standout track. Guitarist Tom Cutts’ backing vocals alongside vivid drum work from Adam Kelly merely add to momentous sound Dire Bloom stir up.
Final track, ‘Bleed Out’, demonstrates a more dynamic approach. Duel vocals are complemented by a groove-ridden bass line courtesy of Ben Whynes with JJ Armstrong providing haunting guitar lines, before driving forward with raw, explosive guitars. While Kjåelberg gives one more convincing vocal display that is underpinned by fervent emotion.
Admittedly, Dire Bloom aren’t going to be a revelation in the emo or pop-punk world. However, the four songs on offer here do have longevity. The combination of big choruses and heartfelt and honest lyrics is pulled off perfectly. On further listens, there are signs of progress compared to ‘Facade’. As a whole, ‘Seasons’ sounds bigger and tighter than its predecessor.
When you combine both EP’s together, it’s clear Dire Bloom are quietly developing a strong set of songs that shouldn’t be ignored. And although they have a tendency to lean on their influences, in time, this Leeds group will form an identity that will solidify them as one of the scene’s most exciting, up-and-coming bands.
‘Seasons’ EP by Dire Bloom is out now.
Words by Sêan Reid (@SeanReid86)