Elder Fawn - A Blood Infused Obligation (DEMO)
Being Mancunian isn’t a source of pride for me. It’s not an achievement but more of an accident of birth. It just so happens to be where all my family are from and where my parents stayed and decided to breed. But when you hear local, young talent making impressive and inspired noise it really dawns on me how much I love being in this city. Young people are doing extraordinary things here and it’s an exciting time to be a rock music fan.
Elder Fawn are one such prospect. A young band on two counts; the three members are not only young in years but the band themselves have only been around a year or so. In fact recent personnel changes have seen all the original members, bar Luke Gallagher on guitar and vocals, replaced. It’s a bold move so early in a bands career but if you have a vision that needs to be realised then you need the musicians that can realise it.
What is immediately apparent to me on first spin is that Elder Fawn have eschewed the heavy noise and grunge stylings of their earlier works and headed off in a more progressive and cleaner direction. The opening bass driven and intricately picked riff that opens A Blood Infused Obligation sounds tricky and offbeat but sacrifices no accessibility. There’s more than a touch of Biffy Clyro influence at play here.
Instantly fascinating it builds nicely into a dramatic, surge of power in the verse. Gallagher’s vocals are on top form and Jack Winstanley’s bass drives along nicely as Richard Helsby’s drums keep everything as tight as a fish’s sphincter. Watertight. The technical ability on display and the maturity of the songwriting here is more than evident. Plus, as a bonus, it proves that not every musician from Manchester called Gallagher is a twat. Elder Fawn are a talented set of lads and this demo was completely recorded at home. And having once recorded a fart on an old tape recorder I know how hard this can be and I still haven’t found the mic I used.
A Blood Infused Obligation is clever stuff but neither smart arsed or pretentious, which is always a danger with the PROG word. Anyone can listen to this and enjoy it as the musos out there compliment each other on their ability to count a 16/6 beat over a 4/4 riff. OK, now I’m starting to talk bollocks and have lost myself completely. Now, where was I? Oh yes… the review.
All in all this track is a brilliant effort and there is glimmerings of greatness here. I’m looking forward to seeing this new line-up live, perhaps at our very own MR Progathon one day, eh Phil?
One more thing: while you are checking out this demo give HOPE a listen on their Soundcloud page. It’s one of the most stunning instrumentals I’ve ever laid hears on. Simply beautiful.
Words: Paul Cooke