Beginning with a funky synth riff before moving into Muse-like guitars and sound effects, the first thirty seconds of ‘Force You’ by Soulmith prove to be one of the most interesting demo openings of the year until, sadly, an acoustic guitar takes control and the song moves into traditional prog rock territory. Verse/chorus/ verse/chorus before the obligatory broken down and soulful mid section which then builds up again into a roaring finale, ending with a far bigger and funkier guitar version of the opening riff which, if you have managed to get through the rest of the song, will provide the same sort of satisfaction that the intro did.

Sandwiched between such an interesting opening and end remains a song that is rather standard, as is flip side ‘Black Market’, but still has the sound of epic stadia. With the structure of a Pink Floyd or Dream Theatre track, harking back to the grunge sound of Eddie Vedder and Moist and with the obvious attempts to emulate Muse, Soulsmith have an interesting mix of influences, some promising ideas and obvious potential.

Despite the nineties grunge recording and the lo-fi packaging (complete with a press release that looks like it was typed on a 1980s Amstrad) the hair metal riffs and funk rock choruses meld together to create a wall of sound that is somewhat in advance of their tender years. If they continue to progress then the future could be theirs, if they do not then the will remain stuck in the past.

By Glitterbitch