Since returning to his musical ventures in 2013, the former Reuben vocalist has become a valuable member of the British alt-rock scene. His polarising, genre-eclipsing wall of noise approach has made his solo records amazing experiences. Hoping to persist with this run of form is Jamie Lenman’s brand new EP Kings of Clubs.
Armed to the teeth with an array of influences, this EP introduces itself with Summer of Discontent (The Future is Dead). The rough hardcore punk influence is immediately highlighted by the harsh, raspy vocals. A guest appearance from Illaman brings the modernised alternative tones to life in what is a great opener. Up next, low flying basslines rumble through Sleep Mission with venom. Another strong vocal performance guides the song well as it shifts up through the gears with ease.
The EP's swift progression through waves of moody punk rock continues on Like Me Better. An initially contained introduction slowly applies layers of energy, leading to a stern finale. The arsenal of adrenaline maintains its powerful presence in the single I Don’t Wanna Be Your Friend. Naturally chaotic guitar-play fuels the volatile atmosphere of the song, even if the repetitive lyrics do let the side down slightly.
The Road to Right announces itself with an earworm of a beat and remains engaging through the catchy, groovy chorus. Filling the penultimate spot on the EP is Kill Me, which channels its inner darkness to create a unique alt-hardcore feel. Concluding King of Clubs ominously is the title track, seemingly timid at first but it gradually emerges from its shell. Overall, this is an impressive release from Lenman as he continues his rise to solo stardom. Any fans of alt-rock’s heavier capabilities should definitely check this EP out.
April 2021 may have been one of the coldest in 60 years, but there were still enough hot releases to warm our hearts and fuel our fires.