Review by Ian Savage
The ‘BBC – Introducing’ band of the month for Coventry and Warwickshire, playing a well-received sell-out show with The Blackout, currently on tour with Flygone in Europe – things seem to to be going alright for local boys Drop Down Smiling. Their ‘proper’ debut EP Sign Here came out a while back, and we’re just getting to hear it over at MR.
On first impressions, it’s somewhat hit-and-miss. Opener ‘Put On A Shine’ is a reasonably predictable mid-tempo modern-rock offering, with little to hook in a casual listener despite the excellent mix and decent production. The band exhibit a good line in vocal harmonies, mind; this is built on during the second tune which is rather more foot-tapping and a little more adventurous and dynamic.
It’s only by third track ‘Time Slows Down’ that Drop Down Smiling start to show some true originality; some nice electronic flourishes and nifty guitar work lift what could easily be a pretty passé lower-tempo tune to something more worthwhile. The closer again exploits some synthesised sounds to expand the sonic palette, and is probably the most intriguing of the four tracks on offer – should the band be able to pull off this kind of layered instrumentation live and pull in a little more lyrical and musical fire they could well form part of the vanguard of modern electronic-embellished rock.
On the whole, pretty good work – but hopefully more a taste of what’s to come than DDS’s signature sound.
7 out of 10
- Put On A Shine
- Down From Your Skies
- Time Slows Down
- Why Should We Change