I was in my bedroom. I was lying on my bed and I was counting the pimples on my ceiling. Now, I’m in the desert, guessing at the number of all the stars spread out over the various red rocks poking out of the sand. And in my ears, ringing like the wind through chimes, is the sound of ‘End Times,’ the first EP release by Gravity Chain, a five piece alternative rock band from Falmouth, UK. Alternative rock, for starters, doesn’t quite cut the sound that has transported me to this foreign place. If I had to fit this sound into a tin, it would be labelled post pock, with hints of desert blue rock. Doesn’t have the same ring to it as alternative really does it? Perhaps, while I lie here on cooling sand, it’d be best to go through the tracks and tell you how I feel about them… I may as well until they take me back home.
‘From Above’ is the first track and descends on the listener first with quiet plucks of syncopated guitar and echoing vocals, driven hard by thumping drums. There is colour in the simplicity of the bass; it weaves in between the guitar and drums, linking them, throwing ripples under their various waves. I get flowery when I hear polyrhythms… There is such a solid groove, yet it feels light and ambient. What I love is the howling vocals, these deep, bluesy melodies that seem to be calling out to the sky. All of these elements lock in spacious sections that guide me into a crescendo that feeds off of the gathering momentum built up from the start of the song. Oh wow… and here comes the next track….
‘Brother’ rolls in, far more bluesy, taking me into a Doors-esque sound with sweeping chords and playful vocal rhythms. Lyrically, this one feels more poignant, lines like ‘I don’t wanna be me anymore’ call on themes that resonate with me… Those kind of themes that you can’t really put your finger on, but you understand all the more. The vocals in ‘Brother’ give it the most momentum, building into a crescendo with the repetition of ‘brother to brother/soul to soul…’ the music and lyrics culminating in an almost battle montage playing in my head. I’m striving with my brother, I’m walking with him, in a desert and yeah, it’s pretty hot and I’m not sure we’ll make it but… Yeah, we’re gonna make it. That kind of feeling? Don’t get it? Listen!
‘The End’ is lead in with the end of the climactic ‘Brother’ feeding off of the previous track’s energy, but progresses to a new sound. The spacious sounds of the EP culminate here in gradual builds and echoing guitar, making for an exceedingly haunting sound. I literally feel like the end is coming. The vocals drone, bass and drums lock in a dirty breakdown, thundering at the end of the track. Rocks are falling from the skies. The clouds are dying. This post rock crescendo and sound lands on my paralysed body and amid the awe, I wake up, in my room.
‘End Times’ is finished. I sit up and check that I’m still alive. Luckily, I have arrived with conclusive details with the EP, safe and sound without the harsh winds of the desert. ‘End Times’ marks an impressive and ambitious for Gravity Chain. They link a variety of genres and rather than making an inconsistent, failing sound, they have delivered a cohesive three songs that feed into each other stylistically and . I’m thoroughly astounded and I must admit, I’m a sucker for music that makes you close your eyes and lose yourself. It’s just crazy that Gravity Chain did it so easily in their first release.
For those who like a mix of bands and genres; reminiscent of Foals, Radiohead, Warpaint, The Doors, Kings Of Leon, but merely drawing on elements from these sources. To really get your own idea of their sound, check out Gravity Chain’s ‘End Times’ EP on here: https://soundcloud.com/gravitychain/sets/end-times-ep