I remember late 2014, around the time I got Sound & Shape‘s Bad Actors album for review. That was a time I was actually getting a few extremely worthwhile independent albums, specifically by the bands Black Map and Suburban Myth. All three of these bands showed potential to be major recording acts, and had (and likely still have) a much better and more professional sound than most independent bands I’ve ever reviewed. One of these bands, Black Map, has since been signed to eOne‘s label. I don’t typically pick favourites among indie bands, but Sound & Shape’s Bad Actors is probably the album I found to be the best out of the three, which is why I was thrilled when they asked me to review their upcoming EP Peasants.
Just five songs long all of which taking up less than twenty minutes, Sound & Shape take this opportunity to show how they’ve evolved in the past couple of years. The title track to Peasants is the opening track. What immediately struck me was the full sound the song has, with all instruments blaring. Along with that was the guitar work by Ryan Caudle and Chris Hurst who make for a nice guitar duo, especially with the harmonies that they cook up. The guitar solo also catches my ear, which is uncommon of independent bands I review.
While Peasants opens things up nicely, it’s not until I’ll Still Reach The X kicks in that the EP gets really good. This is where I hear Sound &S hape one upping Bad Actors. All the hooks are in the right places and the composition behind the track in what I expected from this evolving band. This momentum continues on softer track Dandelion. The song does pick up as it goes on, but it remains the brightest sounding song on the EP. Just like the title track for Bad Actors did previously, this track really brings a nostalgic sound in to modern times.
The faster paced Patchwork Heroes keeps the ball rolling just nicely as it transitions Peasants in to its closing track People In Paper Planes. This closing track does a lot of what the EPs opener did before it in packing a memorable punch. Most importantly it gives one more taste of how mature Sound & Shape is as a whole.
Sure the maturity has always been there ever since I first heard Sound & Shape back in 2014, but there is an increase, mostly thanks to the improved song writing heard on most of the songs on Peasants. This EP is merely the beginnings of what could likely have been a fantastic full length album, which I wish it was. It only shows that there are still great things to come from Sound & Shape.
Thanks for reading!
“I’ll Still Reach The X” – This will be a vinyl exclusive release, so Sound & Shape will not be putting any of these songs online for the time being, therefore I won’t be able to share this song with readers.
9 (Out of 10)
|2.||I’ll Still Reach The X||3:46|
|5.||People In Paper Planes||3:33|