Violent Soho/Spraynard - Split [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)

Violent Soho / Spraynard

Split [7-inch] (2015)


Violent Soho and Spraynard: bands from different sides of the planet that embody different aspects of the same musical era.

First up comes Brisbane, Australia’s favorite sons Violent Soho. While generally underground darlings in most parts of the world, these guys are the best thing since sliced bread in Australia, recently landing on the cover of Australian Rolling Stone. Their contributions to the A-Side of this record have distinctly different tones with one common thread: the Early 1990s. Much like the rest of their sonic output, the band represents the airy, jagged, yelpy vocal tone and dense, particular guitar work of the American Northwest music scene circa 1992. While 99.8% of the time this would be a turnoff for me, I genuinely enjoy their brash take on the genre.

“Domestic Lala” begins with somber guitar picking before launching into the band’s Mudhoney-meets-Another Band Covering Mudhoney signature sound. With alternating soft/loud/soft verses and bridges combined with a terribly catchy four word chorus, the track is a quick burst of nostalgia with a peppering of modern post-hardcore flare. “Home Haircut” is the slow jam of the record, at times echoing both Weezer and Semisonic at times, it does come across as a little cookie cutter compared to its sister track.

Which leads us to Spraynard’s contributions, two quick bursts called “Back Roads” and “Tomatito.” If Violent Soho represents Seattle circa 1992 then Spraynard would be carrying the flag of Southern California circa 1994 (and a pinch of Long Island circa 2002, but that doesn't help the central thesis of this review). The bubblegum pop of Green Day meets the emotional twang of early Brand New is an apt description of the band’s sound and of these two tracks in particular. Not much more, not much less.