Forming in late 2016, the Leeds based outfit comprise of an amalgamation of experienced musicians. Featuring Neil ‘Shortie’ Short (ex Down The Machine/Monster Jaw) on lead vox/guitar, John ‘Flash’ Gordon (ex Propane Penny) lead guitar. Craig Freeman (ex Further From The Truth) on Bass and David Branigan (ex My Older Ego) – the birth of Vs aims to be an effective and credible successor to their previous incarnations.
Album Title: Reality
With their newest EP, VS once again reminds why they are more grunge than post grunge, with their first track, Pretend containing echoes of Nirvana and Pearl Jam, while still maintaining their own original sound. With rhythmic guitar riffs and flowing drums coming together to create the perfect backdrop for the vocal delivery, the music is ridden with harmonic angst.
I love this band, they take me back to high school, never more so than with Listen, which I fell hard for the first time I heard it just a few months ago. I couldn’t say enough about it then, and I can’t say enough about it now.
“You have to save yourself,” yes, yes we do, and the delivery of the line from Listen almost pleads for us to do it, too. So much emotion packed into the words, and that guitar playing, damn. I could still listen to this one on repeat all night long, writing away on a notebook or staring out into the rain.
I was so excited for Again, the third track on the EP, right from the first note. The guitar playing wasn’t the dark mellow of the previous two, it was a little faster, a little heavier, but never the less, easy to get sucked into. Not quite headbanger music but still with enough tempo that the head gets to moving regardless, Again is one of those songs that invites the listener to sing along.
“I’m killing myself just to feel alive.”
Yeah, I get that, I do, and the rush we all look for to remind us that we’re not just puppets on strings dragging along. I felt an instant connection to the song, to all three songs really, and what I’m hoping for in the future is more, much more.
Grunge is not dead.
Call it a revival, call it the post grunge renaissance, or simply call them Vs, it’s not just about the places they take me back to, but the future of a music whose time and place has not come to an end. I hate to use a cliché like timeless, but that’s what this music feels like to me, a leap forward or back, memories and the chance to make new ones, pain and need, impassioned desire, curiosity, and the aching sting of loneliness. We never grow out of these things. Maybe we pack them away, but I felt like they were unpacked, just a little, in listening to each song.
To anyone who has ever loved grunge or alternative in any way, shape, or form, I say give this band a listen and see if they don’t give you a whole new reason to love the genre. There’s something about the melodies, the slow sway of them that’s like a rhythmic snake, hypnotic, that just sort of pulls you in, reminds you of a kaleidoscope of color playing over a plain black wall, or the way the lava lamps tend to ebb and flow. I’m looking forward to more of them in the future.
Rating Tag: Angst, guitar driven, passionate grunge
Track Specific (0 to 5)
Overall Album: 5
BandCamp – vstheworld.bandcamp.com/