Based in West Lothian, Scotland , the four-piece indie band, The Snuts – whose members grew up together – have been setting the Scottish music scene alight with their singles ‘Glasgow’ and ‘Sing For Your Supper’, and are now poised to turn that flame into a fire, with their brand new EP entitled, “The Matador”. Jack Cochrane (vocals/guitar), Joe McGillveray (guitar), Callum Wilson (bass) and Jordan McKay (drums) have pieced together a dirty guitar-driven collection of explosive, high-intensity rock n’ roll anthems for the 21st century and beyond. The Snuts must have tightened every bolt, sealed every crack, and smoothed over every crease in their sound, if they ever had any, because this recording forges a hyper-polished amalgam of epic stadium-ready anthemics and melancholic indie rock that fits squarely under the authentic modern rock rubric.
The distinctive, guitar dominated wallop of muscle, heartache, and a strain of desperation, borders between all-out recklessness and total control, this sound is far removed from what other more cited modern rock outfits have landed upon. The pulverizing vocal talent of front-man Jack Cochrane (vocals/guitar) standing as their primary sonic differentiator.
Considered sonically, “The Matador” is replete with chugging guitars, no-frills, but lush indie rock production, and cloud-clutching choruses so big they seem to strain every blood vessel in Cochrane’s body. Which means that while the rest of the world is out rediscovering electro and synth-pop tunes, you can bathe your ears in irresistible vocals, inventive guitars, and the savvy rewiring of the rock n’ roll sound.
When the title track, ‘The Matador’ rides in on a slowly building tidal wave of washed out guitars, you know you’re in for something special. The confirmation arrives with the opening verse, when the tortured strains of Jack’s indelible voice pierces any skeptical resistance you may have perceived to have, on listening to a new band.
From that moment onward, The Snuts have you by the bollocks, and they kick and squeeze it for 4 full tracks, until you have to admit that this is one of the best new indie rock bands on the entire block.
More often than not, there’s a lyric and vocal that will hit you over the head, and there’s nothing you’ll be able to do about it. ‘What’s Going On’ hijacks your senses, and for me, is the absolute outstanding track in the collection.
It showcases every member and shining facet of this truly astonishing band – the songwriting, the musical arrangement, the playing, the gorgeously soaring vocals, and last but not least, the downright raw and raucous rock n’ roll attitude which is lacking in so many modern rock bands.
The Snuts pay close attention to detail, filling up every sonic space, but still leaving plenty of breathing room for their songs to grow in. This is the case with ‘Mixer’, a truly dynamic track, with changing tempos and tones that will keep you captivated until ‘Summertime’ sets in. The latter track closes the EP on a slow-burning note.
Whatever you’re doing – put it down, up, or away, and let this song seep into your soul while you peel back the layers of talent on display here. “The Matador” is a recording by an underrated band that we should be talking about more often. There is no doubt in my mind that The Snuts deserve much more of the recognition they will probably receive.