"Tattoos" by DowndraftReview
At the moment, the activities of the innovative artists who've been emerging recently have almost overwhelmed my capacity to chronicle them all.
Releases abound, as do gigs and key creatives are popping up everywhere: both in multiple bands and in associated (e.g. DJing) or different artistic contexts.
Downdraft are definitely in this category and if they've only appeared in the magazine around half a dozen times so far, it's because today's single "Tattoos" is only their second to date.
Thankfully we caught their debut "Different Wings" back in June (you can find it on ‘Hot Music Live Presents Volume Ten' also) and to prove that quality trumps quantity (or at least it ought to), despite only having one release, Downdraft were selected to open that month's Godiva Festival.
Clearly quality control is high on Downdraft's agenda as "Tattoos" is up there with its predecessor and is equally obviously a song into which much care has gone.
The whole band (Reiss Pinder on vocals, Dan Murtagh (lead guitar), Starkey (rhythm guitar), Alex Sidwell (bass guitar) & Kurt Sidwell on drums) share credit for the music while Reiss (whom most of you will know is also in the much acclaimed & exciting HEK) wrote the lyrics.
For a band who answer to "hard rock", then I suppose a song of this name is a good way to connect with your audience who'll identify with what you are singing to them.
Even more catchy than "Different Wings", the main riff is one of those where you sort of say to yourself "surely something this great must have been thought of before…?" without being able to think of a prior example. With an insistent stop/start character leading into an equally memorable descending section, the whole song shrieks both accessibility and I'd like to think, commercial success.
The whole band are one of those sure footed ones where each member is having a ball with what they are playing & how they are playing off their comrades: such an attitude communicates itself unequivocally to anyone listening and adds to the pleasure of the experience. Yes, this is enjoyable to play & you'll want to play it often. Well it had that effect on me. Some of you will probably indulge in a little headbanging too. Listen out too for the delightfully "verging on bonkers" guitar solo which breathes a little new life into this phenomenon.
Reiss' singing is part of this joie de vivre though like the earlier single, comprehending exactly what he's singing (rather gleefully) about offers a challenge: another one which I think helps to get you to invest in the song, rather than those grimly functional lyrics whose meaning is so predictably literal that you actual don't take much notice. That the vocals are deeper in the mix this time round adds to the work you'll need to do & the times you'll need to play "Tattoos": something I'm sure that Downdraft would be happy for you to do