Kid Karate- Lights Out

Perhaps people have to fight extra hard to be heard in Dublin, as duo Kid Karate (not to be confused with The Karate Kid because, y’know, that’s a film) make a lot of noise for just 2 people. They may have managed to clone themselves, somebody should check that out. Or perhaps, and admittedly more likely, computers helped vocalist/guitarist Kevin Breen and drummer Steven Gannon quite a lot along the way. Such a full sound is hard to manage with bands that have 5 members.

New EP Lights Out is short but sweet. Well, of course it’s short, it’s an EP, but the sweet bit is a pleasant surprise. With each song, it becomes increasingly difficult to convince yourself that only 2 men are at work.

Two Times is a ready made anthem. Opening with an intro so ominous it could feature in a horror movie, it then descends into lyrics spat with anger, throwing in a standard “whoa-oh-oh-oh” inbetween lines, prepared to be chanted by a sweaty moshpit.

With Heart, they backed themselves into a corner. Such brilliant, engaging music requires lyrics that live up to the expectations that have suddenly been set high… or none at all (like the theme from 28 Weeks Later- no lyrics= a musical masterpiece). “If you had a heart I would love you”- later adjusted to “If I had a heart I would love you”- doesn’t quite do justice to the mosh-friendly mayhem. The piano slowing it all down at the end may be welcomed by anyone on the verge of a Heart-attack from all the excitement.

A pulsating bassline introduces This City – the oddball of the collection. Vocals start so suddenly they catch you by surprise and the half-shout-half-scream singing style doesn’t suit the otherwise calm(ish) music at all. You Need Violence is a lot more deserving of the vocal treatment it gets. Its simple, punky, effective style is a reminder that we should all be grateful that guitars exist. Turn it on, sit back, enjoy.

Lights Out will be released September 23rd.