Empty Vessels
If It Came Down To It

Empty Vessels are a three-piece anti-industry rock band with strong ideas of what they do and don’t like. Pitching themselves as ‘a reaction against the factory-farmed noise that fills the airwaves like fungus’, the music is surprisingly appealing and sits alongside your shrink-wrapped vaguely retro bands without to much friction.

‘If It Came Down To It’ adds some clean drumming to a textured guitar tone, hinting at a sound halfway between The Beatles and early Mansun. The vocal is slightly Roxy music, not quite as camp, but with a similar self-confident wriggle.

The second song, ‘Reassurance’, is a bit more off the beaten track with a creative build up of noise that is split between a messy guitar, tidy rhythm and increasingly insane vocal that’s part dog and part bird. The chaos is reined in occasionally by the melody, which is the main hook ( and only focus) of the track. Now this sounds more like anti-commercial music. Strange, interesting and, well, weird.

‘You Know’ takes the general appeal of the first track and adds a pinch of bizarre. This may be a bit of a compromise, but it works really well with some of the vocals and guitars taking directions unhinged from the steady drums and bass line.

This definitely isn’t what I was expecting. I thought that this would be incredibly grating, overdone and far too up-their-own arses. However, although the effort is definitely made to make journeys that stray from the evil-corporation-music, there is still an underlying thread of listenable rock music that forms a washing line for the odd stuff to hang from.

Written by Fenton on

Steve Fenton writes in our music, words, and culture categories. He was Editor in Chief for The Mag and covered live music for DV8 Magazine and Spill Magazine. He was often found in venues throughout the UK alongside ace-photographer, Mark Holloway. Steve is also a technical writer and programmer and writes gothic fiction. Steve studied Psychology at OSC, and Anarchy in the UK: A History of Punk from 1976-1978 at the University of Reading.

Discover More Music