Sauropod - Roaring at the Storm - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Sauropod - Roaring at the Storm

by Nathan Fidler Rating:8 Release Date:2016-01-24

Remember the recognised trend of this decade being Scandinavians taking on American musical styles? Well, it’s continuing this year with Sauropod, as they tackle grunge and little bit of punk-pop in their debut album, Roaring at the Storm.

You may have been put off by the mention of grunge and punk, but it’s not to be taken as a negative. These guys seem to be pulling off a mixture of the two extremely well considering the current musical landscape. Opener ‘You and Me Should Leave Together Tonight’ sets up the feel of the album brilliantly, a mixture of growled vocals with a nervous melody.

Played at a frenetic pace, as on ‘(I’ve Been) Bad on Emma’, this combination of pacey, catchy verses and unrelenting grunge choruses is their main staple - the one and only gripe you could have about this album. ‘Winter Song’ illustrates how that formula can be used to its best effect, with a riff heavy opening, foreboding right before some tongue-twisting lyrics “the ice will lick your shivering skin, unless you’ve got a choir of fire within”. The chorus, a  fist of grunge, slammed down over and over again is strangely compelling.

There is another side to Sauropod’s game, and that’s throwing their nervous paranoia into lullaby-esque songs. ‘Running Song’ and ‘On The Hill’ both give a taste of their scene setting abilities. The latter in particular is worth pricking you ears up for, repeating lullaby xylophones and softly strummed guitars. It descends into what are presumably Norwegian lyrics, giving things a sinister turn, like you’re being drawn to the woods with no idea why; “Swing a demon by his fangs and pray when winter comes nobody hangs” being the closing, strained answer.

There is no denying that this is a band leaning heavily on their genre influences, but there is energy and passion splattered across these songs. They sound like they’re having a great time in throwing everything into it once and they’re making a damn good go of it while they’re there. Like dipping cold hands into hot water, there is something unsettling but intriguing going on here.

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