EP Review... Birdcage - OVO

As we continue to slip uncontrollably into the sounds of 2014, Birdcage, the South Wales 4-piece, manage to tame us by reeling us in with their alternative rock sound. Their rebut EP, ‘OVO’, presents a handful of great influences ranging from Dinosaur Jr to the timeless Neil Young, and it’s enlightening to hear such influences being thrown into this 5 track concoction that soars from fuzz filled songs to a more ambient, acoustic number that gives the EP the perfect balance.

‘OVO’ is the opening track, and what an introduction it is. The intricate guitar melody is shoved to the side by baggy basslines, battering percussion and the swirling, fuzz-filled guitars. The vocals are handed over to Liam, one of two brothers in the group. It’s hard to believe that that Birdcage are from a quiet welsh town as their songs are jam-packed with Seattle grunge that hasn’t been revived fully as of yet. Liam’s voice keeps the pace strong, allowing key changes to happen among the instrumentals, as well as the lo-fi goodness of their influences to shine brighter than the Northern Star. It’s certainly a wake up call, and a fantastic start to a great EP.

Track number three, ‘Settle Down’, acts as the centre point for the EP, and it certainly gives Birdcage a strong profile when it comes to their range of sounds. The heavy, fuzz-filled riffs are dropped for a stripped, raw, acoustic track that is led by the second brother, Alex, on vocals. The layered guitar melody is delicate for these lads, and swirls beautifully in and out of vast chasms, completely dissolving their pedal driven sound to a heartstring pulling, tender sound that is completely unpredictable given their previous tracks. Alex’s vocals gently whisk away the listener to a clean space, giving the EP a perfect balance that showcases the Welsh band in a secure, luminous way.

‘Be Again’ is my personal favourite of the EP. After experiencing Birdcage’s delicacy, it’s inevitable that their fierce fuzz is due to make an appearance. ‘Be Again’ wastes no time in throwing vigorous drum sounds out there, as well as resolute guitars that send the listener into a head banging haze. The chorus is certainly a strong point thanks to the brothers harmonies. They interlink perfectly, emphasising their grunge-filled, fuzzy sound that is undoubtedly compelling.

Birdcage are great at what they do, and their 5-track EP highlights their determination, and dedication, towards the revival of the timeless grunge sound that some say was destined to be created and buried in Seattle. Birdcage have created a brilliant EP, and I’m sure everyone can see how brilliant it would be translated to a stage in front of a live audience. Make sure to protect your eardrums though, this four piece like it loud!

Birdcage - OVO
Out of 10: 8/10

Written by - Cerys Kenneally

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