Any reviewer will tell you that what they want from a band is a lot of nice, easily digested information to accompany the ‘please review’ email. In short we are often ‘pushed for time’ (see under ‘lazy’) and want everything spoon fed to us so that all that really remains for us to do is express our opinion on said release. So, when you just get the link to the song and nothing else, and even a Facebook trawl isn’t helping you to find out anything about the group, it does bring forth a certain negative energy from the reviewer.
So, Viola Dust. What can I tell you? Well, I’ve just about worked out they are a 5 piece from Northern Ireland, with members who previously played in Elspeth but who, curiously, only have a picture of one member on their Facebook page. Is this reticence to show themselves down to some attempt at enigma or mystery? Are they simply so ugly they bust the camera lens? Or is this really a band where one man calls the shots and the rest are merely his backing group? Simple answer is, I don’t know.
It should annoy me, for the reasons stated earlier. But it doesn’t. Why?
Well, simply put, Viola Dust are the business. I am not the first, nor will I be the last to say so. Already with radio airplay aplenty for the previous single ‘You’re Mine’, including ATL, Radio 6 and Xfm, Viola Dust are stirring up a lot of interest. It’s not hard to see why with their mature, synth-based, hook-laden powerful sound. Taking both singles into account, not just ‘The Big Hop’, I hear a bit of Plan B influence in there (especially on ‘You’re Mine’), some Arctic Monkeys phrasing (especially lyrically) and some old school New Order (with tuneful vocals) or even The The. All good name-checks for this style of music.
I’ll go back to the first word I use to describe them – ‘mature’. I don’t mean this to mean they are not relevant or that it is x-rated stuff. No, I meant that the music is so tight, so well-produced, so punchy, that it speaks of a band that really knows what they are doing both in terms of writing and recording.
Really good stuff…now..who the hell are they?