Hailing from the NY area and featuring former members of dayinthelife..., Glassjaw and Blankface, soundofspeed are a melodic hard rock outfit who take the driving post NY hardcore ideals of groups like Quicksand and Helmet and combine them with the sweeping sonic range of Failure, Alice In Chains and recent Cave In, creating an engulfing sound that is both gracefully melodic and tenaciously invigorated, belting out searing grooves, articulate breakdowns and gritty hooks to reel the listener in.
Band frontman/guitarist Josh DeMarco's gruff vocals paint an aggressive picture that retains a grave sense of urgency through emphatic croons and heartfelt verses, while backing vocals courtesy of guitarist Mitchell Marlow surface at regular intervals, intertwining and establishing a strong range of thick, well rounded harmonies that blossom into empowering buildups and spellbinding choruses. Meanwhile, guitar wise the outing is generally quite dense, attacking with fierce riffs and grating harmonics that jar the listeners attention and shove the songs forward, but they are by no means limited and are also just as able to break off and spiral into delicately textured strums and sonically experimental squeals that soothe and enrapture in a very Failure reminiscent fashion. The basslines on the other hand are quite fiery, striking out with jagged hits and a hard hitting playing style that adds a distinctive roomy lowend to the mix overall. The drum work however is inherently focused, punching out concise hits and rolls with a crisp feel that is both rigorous and energetic, consistently developing a powerful momentum that guides the songs through to completion. A few faint touches of electronic programming are also incorporated into the tracks as well and though sparse, they add a certain depth and variety to the bands sound overall.
The bands mature song writing and penchant for crafting dynamic verses and choruses that seamlessly transition into free fall like passages is what undoubtedly sets them a notch above the competition. The tracks are edgy and full of hard driving grooves, yet they never neglect to slow things down for a well placed breather. The addition of expansive guitar work and various fragile sounding auditory embellishments also firmly help to captivate, while ensuring that the music is rarely dull in scope. The lyrical element in place is also quite impressive. Introspective and full of clever wording that leaves a lasting impression, the songs effortlessly become stuck in the listeners head through the strength of their content, rather than resorting to gimmicky phrases and contrived angst. Admittedly though, the band do have a certain radio friendliness to them that may not go over well with some crowds. But in their favor, it is not because they are out to write radio hits, instead is seems more that they are just able to construct finely written songs. It should also be noted that the tempo of most of the songs included is also a bit slower paced as a whole and as such, the material available here exhibits a more calculated and methodical side of the band that may not fully represent all they are capable of. Aside from that though, what we are presented with on this demo is a strong collection of quality songs from a very talented group, especially when considering that this is only their first demo. As such, it looks as though they are already well upon the fast track to making a name for themselves, expect big things.
(4 / 5)