Blind Race

Come and Get It EP

Written by: BW on 23/10/2014 14:40:17

I don’t hide from the fact that I’m a big grunge fan above all else on the rock spectrum, my favourite grunge band being the mighty Alice in Chains, as some would hopefully agree. When you see a band come along that are for people who like specific bands then you try and pay attention and want a piece of it as soon as you can. Toronto five-piece, Blind Race are meant to have a lean towards the mighty grunge masters, but I would have to disagree. I’m not for one minute saying that this is bad though. They do sound a hell of a lot like Godsmack however, but with a slightly lighter feel about them.

The ballads for a start seem to be a little more up tempo and the main songs still carry enough of a punch to deem them worthy of having a sore neck muscle, which is what you want. The sign of a good grunge band is being able to balance so many styles into their repertoire, yet when I say that these guys sound like Godsmack, I mean that they sound so close to them at times you could almost think you’ve put the wrong disc into the player (that is if people still use discs in this day and age). A prime example would be to listen to “Hypocrite” which is the opening track off the EP “Come and Get It” and I swear to God(smack) it could be off of anything the Massachusetts band have ever released. Blind Race’s vocalist, Tommy Geraldes sounds far too much like 'Smack’s frontman Sunny Erna that it almost feels like they are the same person with a split personality. it is so uncanny, truly.

The songs on this, their third EP though, are nicely varied and sound absolutely fine to me. Going back to “Hypocrite”, it’s a decently paced track with good balance in the instruments and it follows the path you would expect most of these songs to go down. The simple catchy riff slips under the vocals and double kick drums to keep everything held in and when the chorus comes in we slow down a little to let things breathe and get some backing vocals in and a bit of percussional variety.

With “Come and Get It” there is some nice mixing of time signatures and tempo movements to keep the hook embedded and the title track doesn’t really seem to hold itself back. The shrieks from Geraldes don’t seem too overpowered, which a lot of singers can do when they get carried away with things. Listening to this track makes me think there’s almost a bit of Soil mixed in there as well. I’m talking about Soil in their heyday though (or the “Halo” days as I’d like to call it). The best quality you can give to a song like this is that you start bobbing your head without realising it and that is what this track manages well. I think it has the album name with good reason; and who am I to question it?

The other two tracks on this mini album have their own distinct qualities about them. There are actually five, but I’m not really counting “Gone” as it is a ballad that lasts less than two minutes and the lyrics just don’t keep me entertained enough to warrant mention. Let me put it this way, I think it needs alcohol guidance with the amount of whisky on the go. It just feels like some tired songwriting, which is a shame when you look at the rest of the disc. The biggest shame with that song though is that the musical side of it is pretty sweet, but the words just let it down.

It isn’t to say that the rest of the songwriting is of almost Pulitzer quality, but it certainly fits and gels a bit better, that is a definite. The grittier of the slower songs on here is “Hopeless” and that ticks all the boxes you need for a song of this type. You get the softer opening, slightly scruffier bridge to the chorus and enough stuff in the background yet not cluttering the track in any major way. The chorus itself is solid and stable, with a nice little minor chord turn stuck in there. The guitar solo is a bit weepy, but controlled well enough and not so over the top that is consumes the rest of the song.

The only track left, “Truth or Dare” does open up a bit different to much that I’ve heard before and it also keeps the theme locked into the verse, which is pleasant, as is the link work up to the chorus, but then it hits that main catch section and it does the one thing that absolutely drives me mental. I hate it when bands just keep using the same two or three words over and over and over and over (see what I mean?) I’ve always said that this instigates laziness on the writing part and it annoys me EVEN MORE when the music that it sits on top of is actually pretty decent, so by process of elimination you can guess how annoyed I am at this point. The song is pretty decent apart from the boring as hell chorus “Take it…… Take it….” Yeah…. Take it and get it the hell out of here and put something more interesting in there.

What we have here IS a decent EP, with some pretty nice musical notes and some well thought out structure, but it is let down on the odd occasion by some sloppy songwriting, which when taking into consideration the lyrics elsewhere on the album and that there have been two other EP’s and a full album is something I can’t really stomach. There is still a little work to do and with a little more thought and time this band can get well up there. It sounds like the real deal, but there isn’t enough within the finished product to back up the rest of what is on show. It is a real shame, as I’d love to rate it higher, but I get this feeling that because of the frailties contained in certain areas and that Blind Racedo, as I’ve mentioned, sound a lot like another band, I’ll probably be listening to what I know, rather than what I’ve got here. Blind Race are certainly heading the right way, but there’s a little way to go before they can consider the podium.


Download: Hypocrite, Come and Get It
For The Fans Of: Godsmack, Soil, Saliva

Release date 18.11.2014
Self Released (Amber Label)

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