By Dale Platt
Having spent the best part of the last year touring, Somerset quartet October Drift present ‘Stranger Days’ – the band’s latest EP being a concerted effort to further their progress both musically and in reputation. Available from March 25th via Scruff of the Neck Records, the four track release distills the essence of the band’s sound in a succinct, yet profound helping.
Kicking off the proceedings, ‘Losing My Touch’ is immediately inviting with its intense bass lines and heavy dose of distorted guitar, the delicate vocals swim in amongst it all. There is so much at work throughout ‘Stranger Days’, and on so many levels, that striking the balance often seems to be a gargantuan task. On the large part it is achieved seamlessly with flashes of post-punk stylings thrown in, although there are momentarily lapses in both ‘Champagne’ and ‘Still Here’ where the balance is somewhat off kilter.
For the most accomplished outing of October Drift‘s particular brand of complex instrumentation and warm tones, the final track of ‘Stranger Days’ is certainly the choice cut. The vocal work throughout ‘I Left My In Amiens’ is both striking and meaningful, all against the backdrop of a band which compliment one another’s intricate work so effortlessly.
The EP in entirety is both astute and accomplished, speaking on a technical level with the voice of precision and genuine passion. There are occasional moments where the melodic intricacies do verge on becoming almost languid, and a sharp injection of energy could shape October Drift into something more complete and varied. However, ‘Stranger Days’ marks another evolutionary step up for October Drift and undoubtedly on towards the next expansion of their sound and identity as a band.