Reserved for Nothing

Reserved For Nothing
At The Beginning We’ll Start Again

With a new EP due out at the end of February, a potential deal with local label Manmade Records in the offing, and an intensive Spring touring schedule on the cards; it would be fair to say that Reserved for Nothing are aiming to move up through the gears during 2005.

So with high expectations planned for the year ahead we took a look at RFN’s first three track demo, released last year, for some sort of indication of what’s to come.

Counting in with a menacing hi-hat, the guitars and bass crash through the stereo with a dark and brooding purpose. Add to this a couple of anger-controlled vocal lines and you have the sort of intro that’s certainly no stranger to anything Rage Against The Machine have done before. However, any thoughts of ‘Put Me Out (If I’m on Fire)’ being a politicised slab of metal/rap are quickly put to one side as the guitars move the track forward with a combination of Pantera/Therapy style riffing, only stopping for breath during their dual Maiden-esque solo. The drums and bass are tight throughout however, it’s the vocals where some criticism has to be levelled.

While clearly needing some rounding at the edges in order to confidently reach every note, the lead vocal is understandably not delivered as strongly as it should be. The fact that the vocal has the talent to do this is not in question, it is simply that at the time this demo was recorded that potential was yet unrealised. This will no doubt be sorted (or already has been) with age and experience however, combined with the half-hearted hardcore screaming on this track, it drags an otherwise decent song down.

‘Only Smiling’ expands the interesting intros theme with keyboards sounding slightly like a sinister fairground ride. However, this soon descends into an angst-filled lament directed at an ex-lover with a ‘fake plastic smile’ and who was ‘never enough’. Who dumped who is not entirely clear, however what is crystal is that the drumming on this track is excellent, serving to rivet the whole song together to near watertight proportions.

Ending with an altogether mellower tune, ‘If Only’ manages to deliver some interesting vocal hooks along the lines of ‘you were a tumour with a sense of humour and you’re growing inside of me’ and some noteworthy advice in the form of ‘breathe before you scream’. The drums again are excellent while the bass is as solid as ever. The guitars, for the most part, cope with the different parts of the song well however, a bit more attention to the clean sound here, as well as during the quieter parts of ‘Only Smiling’, would help bring both tunes to life.

Overall the impression left by this demo is of a band who clearly enjoy writing individual, stand alone songs. While this may not be apparent from the first listen, by the second it becomes clear that each of these three tracks is distinctive in its own right. Add to this the interesting tempo changes along with the quieter, more suspenseful moments, and what you have is healthy dose of raw potential.

2005 could be an interesting year for Reserved For Nothing.

Written by Habert on

Pete Habert was sub-editor for The Mag and co-ordinated submissions from the swarm of writers that contributed articles from their local music scenes.

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