You’ve got The Vines, The White Stripes, The Hives, The Libertines, Jet and the utterly underrated, practically unknown but awesome Texan band Young Heart Attack – now you can add Geordie quartet The Sound Explosion to the recent distinctly loud burst of good old stripped down garage rock’n’roll bands. It’s like the early ’70s all over again!
The Sound Explosion make music that is powered by nitrogen, a sudden flame (or more accurately the start button) will erupt this cataclysm of guitars, drums and bass and having you yearning for more. You’ll only get the full use of your ears back the following day.
It feels like these lads sat in a music class taught by Iggy Pop with Jimi Hendrix as the head of department and a bunch of the aforementioned bands as fellow pupils. Imagine the playground arguments during break time? And the things they’d sneak into school? Imagine the jam sessions! If only.
The Sound Explosion formed in 2003 fronted by Glen Roughead and Kit Endean, both on guitars and vocals with Euan Macfarlane and Stevie Gibson on bass and drums respectively. They sound so experienced, talented and promising – yet all four members are just 20 years old. Their last single Time After Time is now a certified sell-out and their highly charged opus Street Freak was unleashed in March 2005.
Traveller Man is crazy go-cart ride driven by a doped-up junkie and Street Freak will slice your throat with its sharp flick-knife riffs. Looking At You is like an early Jimi Hendrix song with its blues-based aggression and yearning. Shotgun Of Love has had its nose sawn off to add more power and speed to the bullets, hitting the target very hard. And it works.
Living In The Caves is thunderous and Night Train is a stunning song with a terrifically catchy riff. A haunting ambience lurks through In The City creating an eerie but oddly alluring feeling. Stone Throw is a harsh catapult of hot rocks while Krystal is moody drag. Time After Time moves fast it could beat the current land speed record and The Blessing is a fine way to end a thrilling rock ‘n’ roll road trip.
The Sound Explosion’s self-titled debut is a stunning 11-track line-up that is consistently brilliant, intensely fluent and unstoppably fast. Like Young Heart Attack’s debut, 2004’s fantastic Mouthful Of Love, this initial creation is one of the best debuts I have heard.