Monday, 26 January 2015

EP Review - Tuff Love - Dross

Tuff Love's debut EP Junk,  released back in May last year, was a riotous blast of guitar pop that was simply fantastic.  Now, rather splendidly, the band have followed that up with a new EP which goes one step further.  Dross  is released via Lost Map Records on 9th February and the title is happily no pointer at all to how the EP sounds.

Kicking off with Slammer,  as good a guitar pop song as I’ve heard in years, which mixes wonderful 'butter-wouldn't-melt' harmonies with guitars lines that remain tense and almost threatening during the verses before exploding into life in the chorus.  Slammer  combines the best parts of Nirvana and Pixies before signing off with a Peter Buck-esque guitar line reminiscent of R.E.M. at their Document  era peak.   It’s a tremendous track that is impossible not to fall in love with.

That's Right  follows and shows an intriguing, spikier, almost post-punk side to the band that has a more sinister edge than Slammer  but one that still retains the band's innate ear for a ridiculously catchy melody.  Sebastian  and Doberman  follow, both slices of Throwing Muses or Belly like loveliness, the former containing some beautifully ethereal harmonies that are a highlight of the EP.  Cum  rounds proceedings off, swaying along in a beautiful way, underpinned by lyrics speaking of regret and loss.

It perhaps seems unfair to previous EP Junk,  but Dross is a significant step forward for Tuff Love as it showcases the full range of their talents perfectly.  What is most impressive is the stupendously catchy opener Slammer  and if that song points the way forward for Tuff Love, there are exciting times ahead.

Tuff Love – Dross  is released on Monday 9th February via Lost Map Records on download and 10" pink vinyl available here.  Pre-orders give you automatic membership of the Tuff Love Friend Club.  The band are also hosting a release party on Friday 6th February at Nice 'N' Sleazy's, Glasgow.

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