Article by KevW
Sauropod's music has been described as grunge-punk, but it's not quite as simple as that. While the Norwegian trio may not exactly be testing new waters with their debut album 'Roaring At The Storm', pinning their sound down to a specific tag isn't all that easy. Sure, these songs are all fuzzy blasts of guitar music with nothing passing the four-minute mark, but they seem intent on not using the exact same trick twice, and that makes this a thoroughly enjoyable listen. At just under half an hour long, there's not really time to get bored anyway, but because they mix things up it becomes even less likely that will happen.
The palpable energy of 'You And Me Should Leave Together Tonight' gets things underway with some melodic, scuzzy indiepop that gives way to a grittier chorus that sticks in your head. This punchy attitude doesn't dissipate for the almost entire record. It's there in the frenetic flurry of 'Hausmania', a close cousin to 'You And Me...', the primitive punk blast of '(I've Been) Bad On Emma', the surging female fronted new-wave that is 'Headphones' (and is something of a standout) and 'Fugue' flits between grunge, gravel-throated hard-rock and lighter pop-punk, seemingly without thinking twice about it. 'Winter Song' is perhaps closest to pure grunge with its buzzsaw riff and growled chorus, but the verses are a touch lighter, and the yin to that song title's yang is 'Sunny Day' which is closer to powerpop, neatly including some trebly twangs that bring to mind early surf music.
Changes abound on the comparatively chilled 'Running Song' where a '60s pop vibe is brought in, marking this tune out as something of an oddity, although it does still manage to fit in well. Another oddity is the ridiculously joyous 'Edge Of A Cloud' which is bundles of fun and contains a sunny melody that comes a quite a surprise, but a very pleasant one, as this is gorgeous fuzz-pop. The brief, cinematic soundscape of the title-track is something else that you didn't see coming on this album of twists and turns. Fittingly, they finish with the unexpected and nicely arranged dark pop song 'On The Hill' which even hints at The Beatles at some points, and twinkles and sparkles at other times. You never know quite where Sauropod are going to take you next, but rather than sounding splintered, it's this that makes 'Roaring At The Storm' such an interesting and enjoyable set of songs.
Buy: 'Roaring at the Storm'
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