Screaming Red Mutiny – Screaming Red Mutiny – EP Review
This is atomic!
If you’re a regular reader here at our pages – you’ll probably remember these guys from when we posted up the video for the scorching lead-single “Iron Disposition.” If you’re not familiar with this killer four-piece crew, just know that Screaming Red Mutiny isn’t here to fuck around & they’re about to come storming out of the gate harder than you can possibly prepare yourself for. You’ve been warned lightweights; pushing play on their latest record is a commitment that is not designed for the faint of heart. Seriously…within about ten seconds or less, this self-titled effort threatens to scorch your stereo system with a unified & scathing sonic force on full display, immediately on the attack with the gripping sound of “Mouthpiece” starting the new EP from this red-hot alt-rock/metal band out of Tulsa.
Best way I can think of to help describe what I hear throughout these six songs would be to say that the blend of crushing sound would be something close to what it would be like if you combined KMFDM, Cold, and Finger Eleven all into one extremely tight band. On a track like “Mouthpiece,” they make the case to support this claim immediately; you get the ripping fury of a band like KMFDM, the weighty ideas & harmonies of a band like Cold, and the electrifying personality of a band like Finger Eleven to bring the best of those hooks out, along with the seething sound of the vocals from Sprout, which could conceivably flare-up and detonate at any given moment throughout this record. On their own, I like or love facets of all those bands I’ve just compared Screaming Red Mutiny to – the idea of getting something similar to what they might be like combined all in one package here, is completely awesome. Anthony Hinton punishes drums, driving the pace, allowing Nick Meena to get genuinely wild with the fierce guitar assault and bassist Jim Bob Lehr to strengthen the low-end with thick & meaty grooves. I think they sound MAMMOTH right off the drop on “Mouthpiece” – and I think that the chorus of this cut could potentially bring just about everyone in to listen to what these guys got goin’ on. When SRM goes hard – you will notice how the walls of both your house and reality begin to crumble under the force; when they switch into the smoothness of the chorus hooks, the quality of the writing shines through the exceptional execution & just how committed this band is at each & every twist & turn of “Mouthpiece.”
There is much potential in a song like “From Heart To Grave” – both of the songs main elements between its verse & chorus have undeniable hooks that people will notice. If anything, on this particular track, they might have out-written themselves between those two parts however; I wouldn’t deny that there are hooks that work in the chorus, but it was the verse of this cut that got me on their side here. I’m not entirely sure what it was…maybe almost a bit too familiar or repetitious in its pattern when it came to the chorus…I don’t blame them, like I said, they found something that works and I get that there aren’t exactly a lot of songs out there that have verses & nothing more. But man, when it comes right down to it, I could eat this verse by the bowlful. Particularly the second-verse forward – that’s where Sprout really starts to feel this rhythm & groove and gets right into the energy of those hooks to bring them alive to their full potential. In classic Screaming Red Mutiny fashion, they set the place on fire through the burning extremities of the breakdown, heading into a killer solo from Nick, and back into those stop/start flashy & stylistic hooks of the chorus to bring it all home. In terms of what the people en masse might enjoy most – there’s a solid chance that “From Heart To Grave” will be a number-one favorite for many on this record; each of these songs are single-worthy in their own way.
LISTEN to that punishing opening to “Trek Of The Adamantium Rhinoceros” – that’s badass AF right there is what that is. Like many of the songs on this record, the twist & infusion of multiple dimensions, styles, & sounds leads Screaming Red Mutiny to another solid victory through their stunning ability to incorporate such an incredible amount of ideas into one tune. No joke – there’s about ten song’s worth of potential inside this single cut – but it’s the impressively flawless design & transitions that this band can make that ties this whole track together perfectly. “Trek Of The Adamantium Rhinoceros” is a testament to crossover appeal – they’ve got the metal-side crushing it, they’ve put in gripping alt/pop hooks into the chorus that take the entire song to that next-level, and they seem to have zero problems whatsoever switching so effortlessly between the different styles & sounds they work with. I mean – obviously there’s a TON of effort to make it all so seamless…but you get what I’m saying – by the time we get our ears around a track like “Trek Of The Adamantium Rhinoceros,” everything is completely dialed-in, well-rehearsed, and absolutely nailed in the recording from performance to production. I think Screaming Red Mutiny is at their versatile best on this cut…the music and intensity just continually come charging at you in all the right ways, the energy on this track is insanely rad to take in. As far as Sprout is concerned – we’re talking about a ton of highlight moments here; there’s no question that the dude can scream like a motherfucker and light-up the mic harder than most could ever dream of – but his ability to smooth it all out and sing with melody that hits the mark so consistently is beyond impressive as well. Chorus-wise, they’ve written one of the best parts I’ve heard in any song this year – the execution is impeccable…maybe even just a hint of the wilder-side of a band like Foo Fighters at work in the influence here…something about that enticing alt-rock melody in Sprout’s vocals and slight edge/rasp included in the way he sings this part. No question though – I thought this was one of the most rewarding tracks to experience on the whole EP and a sign of great things to come from Screaming Red Mutiny in the future to come…this is a compelling and fresh set of ideas all working together as one.
“Iron Disposition” – I’m still a fan and this is a great record for this song to exist on. Springing off the energy in “Trek Of The Adamantium Rhinoceros” – Screaming Red Mutiny takes you deeper into the dark and heavy terrain in the lead-single from their self-titled EP, sounding closest to the Cold comparison on this cut. But like…with a bit more LIFE in its blood, you feel me? As much as I love me some Cold, I always wanted the band to come a bit more alive in its personality and charisma…they had the right ideas, I just wanted them to be a bit bolder – and I fully believe that’s what you get with SRM. “Iron Disposition” enthusiastically charges into the murk, bringing out another brilliantly insightful mix of metal and alternative hooks that are certain to grab your attention one way or the other. While I think the two sides of the extremes in this band can definitely lead to some tense listening moments out there for people that find themselves appealing to one style or the other – what I really believe is that it’s the seamless way this entire band can move from one extreme to the other that’ll keep the people with’em. Now that I’ve heard the record in-full, I’d fully agree that “Iron Disposition” is a solid choice as a lead-single and representation of the band…you just can’t escape the way that versatility works to SRM’s advantage so relentlessly – what a capable group full of talent! LISTEN to Nick light-up the fret-board past the second-minute…it’s so perfectly played and cleverly placed into this song you’d almost miss it if you weren’t consistently paying such close attention to this whole band’s each and every more throughout this entire EP. Bonus points for the smart effects that get put on to Sprout’s vocals as well at times on “Iron Disposition” – every once in a while, he’ll bust out something smart to add to the sound, but most importantly, he never overuses a single damn thing…it’s all doled-out as expertly as it can get.
For the majority of the EP, you get a lot of Sprout au-naturale, which is absolutely enough of a sonic-force on its own to be reckoned with; but in those moments where harmonies, effects, or layers are used to complement his voice, you’ll find that whatever Screaming Red Mutiny has chosen to do with the sound, always seems to be the perfect addition to strengthen the song overall. “Contents Under Pressure” is a fantastic example of the best of both worlds and just how powerful Sprout is on the mic in every situation. Love the drums that start this last cut as well…you get that sense of the finale to come through the way that “Contents Under Pressure” begins. With the push/pull energy rocking back & forth through the verses…SRM reminds me much of the early records (the great ones!) from Finger Eleven when they still had their edge on albums like Tip and The Greyest Of Blue Skies. For what was still a new band at that time…those records were phenomenal early efforts that still eclipse anything they’ve done since. Screaming Red Mutiny gives you a similar energy and melodic power on “Contents Under Pressure” that could easily hang on both of those brilliant records. For a mid-tempo tune overall, this song absolutely CRUSHES and storms through its length with resounding confidence that leads to captivating and truly stellar results. While the hooks are still insightfully well crafted, they smolder perfectly inside this cut and never hog the spotlight…they drift almost towards something like Chevelle at times with the brilliant punch of the low-end provided by the rhythm section in Tony and good ol’ Jim Bob & melody in the vocals. No matter how you look at it – “Contents Under Pressure” contains writing that’ll completely hold up over time…this whole record does – I’d revisit this entire set any time.
I had to have a great laugh about the fact that Spotify for some reason really wanted to try to sell me on the new Ed Sheeran record or song or whatever he’s got going on while I listened to this EP. Don’t get me wrong, he’s not a bad chap and writes a decent tune…but after experiencing this new record from Screaming Red Mutiny – virtually anything else out there, would seem altogether too tame. They’ve clearly thrust themselves into every single moment of their self-titled EP – and the results have this band sounding hungry, determined, focused, powerful, and ready to take on the mainstream with ease.
Find out more about Screaming Red Mutiny at their official website at: https://www.screamingredmutiny.com/
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