by Nicola Craig
Forth Wanderers look to plot their route to indie grunge relevance with debut EP, Slop, and rather than wander through the wilderness the New Jersey band just about manage to find the right path. Slop EP packs emotion, teenage angst and a whole lot of feeling into four easy-to-digest tracks.
Opening track, ‘Know Better,’ sets the pace of the release; rough around the edges and tinged with swirling downbeat guitar lines the indie influence shines. Vocalist Ava Trilling sings “I need to feel loved / no, I need to be tough / no, I need to grow up”, which speaks of a classic case of falling for someone you know you shouldn’t. It becomes apparent the lyrical content is likely to discuss the line between teenage and adult desires heavily during this four track release. The melodramatic, moody vibe might be nothing new but maybe that’s the delight of Forth Wanderers; they don’t need to do anything new or unexpected to be impressive.
Title track ‘Slop’ is a gritty, grunge edged effort, dominated by overpowering guitar lines, trying to push their way through to gain the listener’s attention. Lyrically the track looks at the uncertainties of ‘change’ and the effect that has on you. Lines like; “I love too much to hurt this bad, I laugh too much to be this sad” may not make this the most unique of efforts but it really does turn it into an emotive rollercoaster.
There’s a real honesty throughout the EP, with a sense genuine teenage angst; ‘Nerves’, in particular, portrays this perfectly. It’s messy, a little all over the place but the sharp, twisted guitar lines really get beneath your skin (and into your head). Final track ‘Unfold’ rarely does what its title suggests, sticking the the formula set out by the previous three tracks, it’s a little hard to distinguish between what’s come before.
Sometimes you come across a release which might not break new ground but still shines; this is what Slop EP manages to do. The indie rock tones merged with thoughtful lyrics make it impossible to tear yourself away. With a little tweaking Forth Wanderers have the potential to be something special.
Slop is released 11th November 2016 via Father/Daughter Records.