Guardians EP

Written by: TL on 18/01/2013 16:50:00

Despite the fact that I don't think Guardians is all that great of a bandname, there are at least two bands around called just that, and both of them have had the great sense of imagination to name EP's merely "Guardians" as well. Sigh, cue the confusion, no? The easier one to find on facebook seems to be a rather heavy band from Wisconsin who are currently touring with Born Of Osiris (among others), yet let me assure you that this review is about the other Guardians band, a modern hard rock band from Wallasey, UK.

I choose to label them as 'modern hard rock', because while I've seen others dub them 'alternative rock', I don't really hear much alternativeness in the melodramatic and highly Lostprophet-esque sound presented here on this EP. Despite packaging the main material in an intro and interlude of sampled strings to add cinematic effect, the songs here are still plainly straightforward and while the staccato riffage of opener proper "An Enemy Of My Enemy" is quite catchy, the first impression you get is that these guys are indeed a second-tier band trying to make something of their own adoration for British success-stories gone before, such as Lostprophets or Young Guns.

A track like "Follow Your Heart" doesn't come across much better, with its intentional power-balladry only amounting to giving you a feeling like it could almost have been a submission for EuroVision songcontest (I mean come on lads, singing your own bandname in the chorus? Tacky!). Then I'm more onboard with "New World Order" though, which both has one of the releases' catchiest choruses, and which gets a nice dynamic going early, with up-beat drums, a brazen signature riff, gang shouts from the band and the toasty Andy Sixx-ish rock'n'roll singing of frontman Brad Doné. Here there's the hit potential which the band is clearly going for.

Being one of the band's more testy songs, "New World Order" combines with closer "Red Eyes" - the closest the band comes to an uncompromising song, given it's pseudo heavy opening and 'epic' 6 minutes of length - to inform the reader that they're at their best and most believable when they let loose and show the most of their heavy tendencies. I don't mind the cheesy, 80's style vocal harmonies that make occasional appearances so much, but the light-weight, semi-poppy riffage that anchors half the songs here, just superficial and half-hearted, and it subtracts from the perceived integrity of Guardians' better moments, to the point where they do strike me as a sort of a Young Guns wannabe, lacking that band's absolutely crucial believability (you just need this when you write pop-rock that tries this hard). Long story short: It's okay to try to write obvious pop-rock hits to make it big guys (Mallory Knox are doing it with great effect these days) but you need to have some more palpable emotion at the core of it, or you need to disguise it better that you don't.


Download: New World Order, Red Eyes
For The Fans Of: Lostprophets, Madina Lake, Young Guns,

Release Date 07.01.2013

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