September 25th || Bethan Shuff
After taking a year off, Stoke’s favourite pop-punk band The Overcast stormed back onto the scene in November 2016 and released Misery Loves Company (But It’s Better Under Lock And Key) a month later. Six months down the line and many a gig later, the band announced that they were in the process of making their self-produced debut EP, which is set to be released at the end of this year. For now, we are teased with their single, Smother; a taste of what to expect from the EP.
You may recognise the track from their live sets; for me it’s their signature track and the one I always look forward to seeing performed.
Dan Cartlidge’s angsty, punchy drums start the track, introducing a wave of dirty, invasive guitar strums from Sam Bloor and Jim Carter’s powerful vocals. Smother catches you off guard, grabs you by the shoulders and makes you listen.
The chorus softens, with Nick Farr’s rumbly bass line and Sam’s guitar playing a fast little melody behind Jim’s open and honest lyrics. BBC Stoke presenter Rob Adcock once told me, ‘you know a songs good when you find yourself singing it around the house and not realising’, and that’s the case with Smother’s chorus. It’s infectious.
The mid-8 brings a build-up of drums, a much more prominent bass and effects pedals, a build-up to Jim’s distant vocals before a stomp into a finishing chorus. You desperately don’t want it to be over. Luckily though, at the end of the year it will be accompanied by three other tracks on the EP, so you won’t have to sulk for too long.
The professionalism this band have is incredible, not only in terms of music production, but in performance, promotion, personality and appearance. The Overcast are the full package and if you get only one thing for Christmas, make it The Overcast’s EP.