A year and a handful of months ago, British alt-rock quintet Greyhaven aroused rich praise and attention with their EP, State Of Mind. It suggested a band with the potential to become a rich part of the British heavy rock scene. Now the London hailing outfit are ready to release its successor in Breathe, an EP which maybe does not quite realise its predecessor’s promise as anticipated but only confirms thoughts that the quintet has a potent future.
Emerging in either the autumn of 2014 or early 2015 depending where you read, Greyhaven quickly whipped up local support and following through their live shows and debut EP, The Flood. The following State Of Mind, produced by Daniel Kerr (Shields, Create To Inspire, Despite my Deepest Fear), was the moment broader attention was lit, the release sparking praise and coverage with the likes of Scuzz TV and Kerrang, as well as finding a place on one of Metal Hammer’s front cover CD. Since then the band has experienced changes in its line-up and as a momentary foursome uniting once again with Kerr to record Breathe.
Truth opens the release up and quickly has attention in its grasp with a tempting shuffle of beats and a rapacious lure of riffs. It is an opening hinting at a furious expulsion but instead is followed by a calmer if still slightly volatile breath allowing the strong vocals of Sam Paterson to step forward into the already woven web of melodies. Harmonies soon wrap the frontman’s potent tones, the rhythms of drummer Connor Tate and brooding texture of Jack Hudson’s bass a dark almost portentous echo of the song’s emotional heart fuelled angst. With the guitar of Alex Hills as suggestive as it is sonically wiry, the song makes a fine introduction to the EP though for personal tastes is soon eclipsed by its companions.
When We Divide is next, bringing its own tempestuous air and drama to bear on ears and imagination. Great nagging riffs accompany Paterson’s ever tempting voice, rhythms just as thick a welcome trespass as the song mixes sharp hooks and sonic enterprise with emotive energy. Whereas its predecessor, though sounding fresh, held few surprises, the second track is rich with twists and unexpected turns which if anything it does not fully exploit.
Nevertheless, the track is a magnetic persuasion soon matched in almost similar success by the following Crows. There is rawness at its core which enjoyably contrasts the lively shimmer of keys and melody, the song evolving through mellow and crystalline climes but always one sigh away from its tempestuous instincts.
The EP’s title track brings things to an end, the song rising on a caress of keys with a jangle of guitar flanking its move into poppier rock exploits. Temptingly catchy and vocally alone magnetic, Breathe strolls along with a confident smile, its inner fire catching further along to flame with increasing intensity and attraction.
It is hard to say that the Breathe EP has managed to be as richly memorable as State Of Mind before it but it is more of a grower and with every listen impresses and increasingly satisfies and if you have an appetite for bands such as 30 Seconds To Mars, Don Broco, and Alexisonfire, it is an encounter which really should be checked out.
The Breathe EP is released January 12th through Outsider Records.
Pete RingMaster 10/01/2017
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