Woven from the threads of numerous flavours which alone instinctively grab attention, the Carnival Club sound is a tapestry which certainly on the UK rocker’s debut EP, Magdalena’s Cape, blossoms from a rich first temptation to a lustfully devoured introduction thereon in. It is an infestation of the imagination nurtured in the creative mystique of prog rock, the hearty emotion of blues rock, the bold roar of sixties punk, and the hazy climate of psych rock. In truth, it is all that and more in a proposal and release which is as fresh and striking as it is the return of familiar sonic strains; an EP which offers the potential of a new essential force from within the ever pregnant Manchester music scene.
Emerging April 2016, the quartet of Eddie Moxon, George Peel, Joe Lodge, and Kai Jon Roberts quickly made a potent impression on the local scene. Now national awareness is being readied and stirred by the outfit’s maiden EP, its mature presence and rich web of sound belying the youth of its creators whilst consuming ears in an adventure bordering on the essential.
Opener House of Cards instantly entwines ears in one spicy groove, its psych blues tang soon aligned to the heavy throb of bass and crisply landing beats. Vocals make for just as potent bait as the song almost crawls into view before settling into a boisterous rock ‘n’ roll shuffle. With every groove and melodic tendril seemingly becoming thicker and richer in psychedelic/hard rock tenacity as impressive vocals equally grow in energy and presence, the EP quickly becomes a captivating proposal only increasing its grip as Mistakes Troubles and Kisses takes over.
The second track has a lighter touch compared to the heavy presence of its predecessor but an infectious swing built on pure rock muscle and emotive intensity. Its pop rock temptation is as much modern indie as it is seventies heavy rock, another fusion already revealing the kaleidoscopic canvas of the Carnival Club songwriting and sound. Its inescapably catchy body and unpredictable but fluid twists only seduce, passing on a willing submission to its bold charms to the following You’re So Hostile. It is a track even more virulently infectious with its eighties pop hooks and brooding rhythmic seducing which within seconds has the body bouncing and hips swerving with its flirtatiously weighty stroll while roaming the psyche like a blend of The Cult, My Baby, and The Doors; essences of Hendrix and goth rock only adding to its best track grabbing magnificence.
The EP’s title track steps forward next, Magdalena’s Cape a mellow caress wrapped in psychedelic wooziness and prog rock musing but with a tart spicing to its melodic tempting, kind of like a distantly related fusion of The Jesus and Mary Chain and The Electric Prunes to try and give an impression of its sultry beauty.
Another mighty moment comes with the EP’s closing track, Headache a web of crunchy riffs and imposing textures around prowling vocals and stalking rhythms complete with sixties bred punk rapacity. Those stabbing riffs alone ignite the passions, the scythes of guitar and predacious grooves of bass escalating the primal attraction as the ever magnetic vocals seal the devilish deal on offer between song and listener.
It is a masterful and irresistible end to a just as successful release, one still carrying the potential of bigger, bolder, and greater successes ahead for Carnival Club. Magdalena’s Cape is the declaration of something mouth-watering and truly exciting breaking out within the northern music scene. With more of the same, national attention is surely guaranteed and with the realisation of the raw promise within, watch out world.
Magdalena’s Cape is out now through Demolition Diner Records as a digital download, on CD with an additional Ltd Gatefold CD version, and on Ltd Vinyl @ https://carnivalclub.bandcamp.com/track/magdalenas-cape
Pete RingMaster 16/05/2017
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