This is a review of "What's That Noise?" recorded by Sound Of Sirens. The review was written by Jessica Thornsby in 2009.
EP opener 'One Step' is pretty standard, mid-tempo indie-rock with some sharp, hook-packed vocals that lift it above the level of the other bands currently ploughing a similar furrow.
Slickly stylishly guitar rhythms and an undercurrent of buzzy riffs makes for a catchy enough backing track, but it's Rob's shrewd pacing and pitching that really highlights this song's twitchy rhythms, and gives proceedings some edge. Even better are the choruses, where Rob turns out some smoother, pop-infused vocals that inject 'One Step's steady groove with a shot of youthful energy. Competent enough indie-rock, but with great vocals.
Second track, 'Time To Sleep' kicks off in darker fashion, with chugging guitars providing the only backdrop to Rob's brooding vocals.
However, Sounds of Sirens quickly return to more indie-influenced territory, as foot-stomping beats and brighter guitar lines are brought into the mix, and Rob contributes more energetic vocals to the catchy, spring-heeled choruses.
'Time To Sleep' is another solid piece of rock, with some stand out vocal hooks that'll ensure ithe chorus gets fixed firmly in your head.
Final track, 'Goodbye' is initially a meandering, oddly hypnotic quasi-ballad. The chorus is particularly hypnotic; Rob's predictable vocal rhythms are guaranteed to lull you into a pleasant stupor. The chorus also sees Sound of Sirens dabble in a heavier sound, as a weighty undercurrent of riffs is brought in beneath Rob's hypnotic vocals and fluttery surface chords. This dark underbelly suits 'Goodbye' well, bringing to it a drama and intensity that the other songs are somewhat lacking.
'Goodbye' unexpectedly picks up the pace towards the end, as a burst of buzzy riffing marks the start of Sound of Sirens finally getting their heads down and roaring through an end-section of vigorous drumbeats and frenetic guitar-picking. You can't help but wish the rest of this EP exhibited this sort of energy.
'What's That Noise?' offers up three tracks of poised, classy indie-rock with sharp vocals that make the most of every last hook lurking in Sound of Sirens' melodic rock arsenal. 'One Step' boasts a hooky, pop-infused chorus that makes it a thoroughly enjoyable listen, and 'Goodbye's weightier sound ensures it carries extra punch, but 'What's That Noise?' occasionally strays into inoffensive-rock territory that means it isn't always as exciting as its stand-out moments suggest it could be.