Saturday, October 17, 2015

EP Review :: Midcity - Honed



October 2 2015 (self release)


Words: Dave Beech

Despite not one of their four members being old enough to drink yet, Leicester-based Midcity are a band far more realised than their tender years would have you believe.

Having recorded all previous material in a garage, their aptly titled 'Honed' EP marks their first foray into the studio, allowing them to polish the rough edges of their demos whilst retaining the dynamic nature of that initial sound. As such, the finished product is one that's remarkably mature for a band of such a collectively young age; the record's three tracks veering from moody indie to ambitious post-rock with apparent ease.

The title track rumbles along to a moody bassline and sparse guitar licks before an acerbic, fuzz-lavished chorus sets in, a melodic riff, almost out of nowhere offsetting the slacker ambivalence. Following track 'Needles', however, is a little less heavy but no less impactive; the band's obvious appreciation for the heavier side of things finding equal footing with the indie-centric lead guitars, a balance which defines Midcity perfectly.

It's final track 'Slugger' where the they really come in to their own though. The shifting of dynamics is something they will surely come to be known for, a trait which sets them apart from the hundreds of other bands in a similar situation, and is something perhaps most evident in the track's arpeggiated post-rock breakdown.

Though there are, of course, nods to the likes of later Arctic Monkeys and Editors present (particularly in the record's overall moodiness), it's difficult to consider Midcity as an all-out indie band: there are too many variables at play factoring in to their overall sound to make any sort of categorising easy. But with all the potential bubbling over in 'Honed' it surely won't be long before someone in the music press makes that decision for you. Check them out before the buzz sets in and make your own mind up.

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