As much as the name suggests something, er, Plain, it is far from being so. This Norwegian four piece show that Hard Rock really is something to be paid attention to. Their unmistakable style of a thrash styled rock gives a one-two punch of recognisable vocals and ever changing musical sound. The lyrics and the delivery by them is pretty astounding, flicking between screams and clean vocals as easily and done as well as bands who use two vocalists such as Scar Symmetry and Ne Obliviscaris.
After checking the information that the band had sent through with a copy of the album, it is noted that a vinyl edition of this album is in production, and with the overall sound that this album has, the vinyl version is going to sound stunning. It may be because I am a huge fan of vinyl, or it may be that this album can carry itself so well that there is the opportunity for it to be able to sound great on all formats.
The two tracks ‘Son’ and ‘Down and Under’ stand out as good tracks that could carry the album, alongside the two singles ‘Some Child and ‘Outside’, which showcase the variety of styles that the band perform well. The fact that this band has been able to get their music played in the States and Canadian online radio stations suggests that this band have a good means of promotion, and a strong album to be able to back it up.
It is something uncommon to be hearing of a band from the Scandinavian countries playing a good solid rock album with all the stellar metal bands to have graced many people’s ears. However, it seems as though not matter what genre the bands are, they can create a good sound and make it stick.
Most rock albums have this dirty kind of vibe around them, which is not the case with the ‘Plain’ EP, this album is very clean in its delivery, and you know what you are listening to in terms of songs and the whole sound of the album.
The only issue I have is with the mixing, seems a little off, with, like most other bands, the bass getting lost in the mix somewhere, only coming forward in the sound occasionally. I do not know whether this is intentional or not, but it does lose some of the songs’ low end from doing this, which is such a huge shame with such an amazing album that shows that the band have so much potential.
This album is in fact the début album from Plain, and I hope that they can learn from the experience to be able to bring in what they have learnt from creating such a solid first album and bring it forward as they come further into the realms of rock and metal. The album in itself is strong, but with the slight tweaking in the mix to make the bottom end fill in and the bass a little more on the audible side (not too much mind you, just enough to pick up on it amongst everything else). I am certain that these guys will go far with this album and will have every success with further albums.