Outsider - Understanding EP

This is an amazingly catchy butch of songs for a new bands first EP release.

Outsiders vocalist has a great voice, which sounds a bit Keane-like, but don't let that put you off! It's a voice fit for a band that will surely go far and appeal to many people. Outsider make bright, happy, stomping indie anthems of great quality, with a distinctive sound of their own. You can pick out each instrument clearly adding something unique to each song, in particular the opener & obvious single Understanding which is a riff & drum heavy pleasure. In fact you can imagine hearing any of these songs on the radio. Their lyrics are both catchy (I found myself singing along involuntarily after only a few listens) and interesting, they sound like
they have plenty to say and the songwriting craft to be able to say it.

So what of the other songs on the EP? All filler? Not at all. Only Yourself To Blame is a superb ballad. Old Man shows they can make heartfelt acoustic songs as well, with gentle strumming throughout boosted by sporadic bursts of electric riff excitement. Final upbeat track Ginger Smile brings to mind early Stereophonics with fast paced guitars and shoutier vocals. Each track demonstrates their variety with a huge amount of diversity for simply a four
track EP. I can't wait to hear the debut album, which according to their website www.outsidermusic.net is currently being recorded.

This EP is available on small indie label Blue Cat Records and is highly recommended.

Alan Smith

Now here's a rather different opinion...

OUTSIDER- Understanding E.P.

This is for those of you who like Keane. Except with guitars as well as piano. So maybe a bit like Oasis. "My God, how exciting", I hear you cry. To effectively get to the point, Outsider are the sort of unoffensive British guitar- based trio that you might expect to come out of Manchester, as in they are good at what they do, but once you've heard the first few bars of the song, you pretty much know what is coming for the next few minutes. The highlight of this CD is, unfortunately, the final track, "Ginger Smile", a track which some people less patient than myself may not have reached due to afore-mentioned same-old same-old, a track, though still predictable, much more raunchy, retro and ear-catching than it's predecessors and ultimately rock n' roll due to it's apparent assault on ginger people (the lyrical content threatening to "wipe the ginger smile off your face", etc.). Forget acoustic tracks about old men and whimsical ditties about "understanding" (shouldn't be hard, I have already). I beg you- this is your future.
So, to conclude, these guys are well worth a listen when they're not trying to be safe enough to get a set at the next Bob Geldof fundraising event; the faux-deep comments (e.g. through their current line-up, "the magic has now crystallised exquisitely"- what the f?) fatally combine with the generally jingly guitar merrily kicking up the autumn leaves, which ever so slightly stick in my throat and make me gag. They say "inhale them in like the first hints of spring, release them like the heady scents of summer". I say, unless they change their ways, stick a rocket up their arses on November 5th.

Anna C

Visit Blue Cat Records here

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