The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world
CD HIGH SIDE DRIVER EP Review

HIGH SIDE DRIVER

EP

2013

 

HIGH HEAD ROCK AND ROLL

 

 

It’s at times like these that you wish you still lived over on the East coast and could see a band like this live in all their undoubted glory. ‘High Side Driver’ may well be named after an obscure US trucking term (or maybe not, I'm not sure), but what I am sure of is that these guys know how to rock.

 

 


From opening track ‘MGF’ to the very fine and very eloquent song about something we sadly find close to home at times- depression; this is an EP that demands attention. ‘MGF’ opens the EP with a spidery riff and a vocal that has, at times, the intonation of a Hard Rock Brian Ferry or Peter Murphy before bursting into life and driving the song home.  Now if that sounds a little odd it’s not, it’s brooding, it’s layered, it’s powerful and the song itself builds to a groove that you feel like you are soaring above. It’s the best possible introduction, part familiar and part startlingly original.

 

 


‘See You Next Tuesday’ has a huge atmospheric hook that breaks the light refrain and puts a new slant on the well-worn dynamic that so many bands fall back on. High Side Driver is one of the few bands that seem to understand it though, and it turns what could have been rather trite into a rather powerful song. Indeed it’s in the lighter passages that ‘High Side Driver’ manages to build their sound into something quite special.

 

 


The acoustic-led ‘Leave this Moment’ divides the EP  and sees some wonderful strings augment Rob Pearson’s most emotional vocal, turning what could just have been a throw-away slower number into a great statement.

 

 


It’s Voices (I Hear)’ though that really hits home bringing everything together into a song that plays to the bands strengths. It’s a song that engages you and really underlines what has already been hinted at – this is a band you should be watching closely.

 

 


By the time you get to the last track ‘Amy’s Black Dog’ you are waiting for that killer statement and here you get it: both dark and powerful, atmospheric and most importantly ‘real’. For a song with such serious subject matter it’s the song that drives home the potential, and the voiceover leads beautifully into the frenetic closing passage.

 

 


A band to watch and an EP to remember. This is great Australian Rock music for fans of bands like The Butterfly Effect.

 

 

 

Mark Diggins

 

CD HIGH SIDE DRIVER EP Review 2013