This is a review of "HeadRush" recorded by Crooked Tongues. The review was written by Gerard Leachman in 2013.
Crooked Tongues haven't been around all that long. First forming in 2010, they've started to create a name for themselves. Performing at both Reading and Leeds Festivals, on the BBC introducing stage, these Leeds lads are on a good trajectory. Branding their music as "rock n roll/psychedelic", their brand new EP 'HeadRush' perfectly encapsulates this.
On the surface level it has a good blend of both rock n roll and psychelic. Crooked Tongues manage to combine the two in such a way that has you nodding (or head banging), along to slightly spaced out, but in your face rock music. This is very apparent during the chorus on the opening track 'Meynell Heights'. This is more than aided to with prominent reverb on lead vocals and the array of guitar effects used. Sometimes it is difficult to discern whether the songs are decent or if the production works to lull the listener into thinking that. I say this because on repeated listens there does to seem to be something missing. The songs are great for general listening, though if you listen a little closer, it feels like it goes on unnecessarily . The songs seem like they could easily be 3 minute radio hits, yet somehow each one goes on for at least 4 minutes. There seems no real reason why, they just fade by. A very interesting trick.
However there are a several highlights on this EP. 'Purple Circle' is a perfect example. When that riff kicks in it just instils an urge to get up and move. It's really easy to imagine this song being played in a tiny club or a massive venue with everyone losing it as soon as the drop. Another thing of note is the final track 'Crying Shame'. It feels like the most intimate track on the EP, but its greatest aspect is the balance it strikes between "spacyness" and just being smooth. It's the only track where the song length truly feels justified.
All in all trying to listen deeper into the music the EP fights back. It doesn't want to create stand out moments. It just wants you to listen to the songs nicely, enjoy the choruses, the rock vibe, and the psychedelic undertones (of which there are a lot!). On this level the over use of reverb doesn't sound so annoying, and the overall mediocrity sounds more like greatness. If you submit to not over thinking, you'll find this to be a great project.