Dropped on April 7th, this incredibly well received EP is something you should definitely check out this Fall. Despite the fact of their obvious modern feel and interesting instrumental structures, their harsh rebellious attitude reminds me of punk bands in the early days of the movement. Let’s play it loud and hope they’ll reach Europe on tour sometime soon.
Newcastle’s Tired Minds, have currently released their 7″ vinyl titled Good Life, available through Break Bend. The much anticipated follow up to their heavily backed and completely sold out of print debut self-titled EP, Good Life is four tracks of eclectic and inventive hardcore at it’s rawest.So fresh is their approach to this genre that the band are hesitant about carrying the “hardcore” title, for fear of misuse. Listeners will find some familiarities here with brash vocals and heavy pounding rhythms being a solid foundation, however it is the subtle nuances that set Tired Minds apart. Bursts of technicality, intuitive and layered guitar work, and an overall creativity in the way they express themselves, these are just some of the factors that make Tired Minds one of the most exciting bands in the country right now.Good Life will be released digitally and on 7″ vinyl available in Midnight Blue, Transparent Gold and White & Blue Splatter. All copies are hand numbered by the band and etched. Good Life is available now through the Break Bend bandcamp. / Official Press Release
Newcastle’s “Tired Minds” could be accused of being fans of At The Drive In, which is the first thing I thought by the time the vocals came in on “Old Blood” the opener for 4 track EP “Goodlife”, but there’s actually a little of the old math rock here and perhaps unintentionally, a sign of At The Drive In’s obvious influence – Fugazi. Released only a few months ago this could have easily fit on a Rubber Records or Au-go-go comp from the early to mid 90s.Starting off with some twin distorted layered guitars and a misleading count in before some faster hyper drumming projectile hurls the vocals and bass into the frenetic pace of the song. Already I’m impressed. For all of 34 seconds we’re assaulted with old school indie punk guitars and frustrated vocals. “all of my cold blood gives no life to my bite!” Woah. We’re pissed off but not immediately revealing what about. But at least the lyrics are implying something while crediting the audience with enough intelligence to work it out for themselves – if they wish. The vocalist sounds positively exhausted and exasperated. It captures that sense of urgency and chaos that this brand of punk rock should, collapsing into what seems like a more reserved bridge and a chance for the guitar and drums to tell their chapter of the story.You expect another explosive verse but instead they slow it down a tad more and the quality production on show here becomes evident. Good production can’t save a shit song but can make a great one into a real statement. Masterful drums and a lazily taunting bassline introduce the second last chapter of the story. Here the drummer gets to improvise a lot more with rolls and jazz style flailing to help carry the repetition of the guitar outro to the final, staccato chord stabbing end of this tale.Tired Minds aren’t rediscovering the wheel. They wear their influence on their sleeve but avoid revelling in nostalgia too much by keeping the listener on it’s toes with unpredictable changes. Lyrically I’ve got no idea what “Old Blood” is about but when they’re delivered this well, when bands harness layered discordant guitars like this with drumming that isn’t just a background time keeper, it reminds me of how I got into this sound some 22 years ago in the first place. / I Probably Hate Your Band
Newcastle post-hardcore outfit Tired Minds’ second EP Goodlife released in April 2014 presents a brief yet focused view of the band since their 2012 self-titled EP. Only four tracks and a little over eleven minutes in length there is much achieved in a brief amount of time. The short length however, isn’t particularly negative as it never allows the music to become stagnant or repetitive.
The guitars on this release play a similar role to many other bands in the genre, dissonance and duelling riffs are the order of the day. Axemen Liam Buckley and Paul Graham trade off against each other in a harsh duel of sounds, climbing up and down the fretboard creating the heavy tones required by such music. Whilst their work is solid on all four songs, Old World Relics and Old Blood show the guitarists working together seemingly effortlessly.
Tired Minds’ rhythm section is (as any good rhythm section should be) the glue holding the songs together. Ollie Todd and Isaac Gibson on bass and drums respectively are remarkably tight across the EP, the vocals and guitars provide sonic colour within the lines set by these two. Noteworthy highlights were the groove locked they locked into halfway through Old Blood completely altering the song’s feel and the constant ploughing forward of Goodluck, demonstrating that the band functions at both high and low tempos.
Vocals are handled by frontman Ben Bullivant in a distinctive style. His delivery is more of a strained yell than a scream, and he sits in the same mid-range register for the entire EP. To be honest when I first saw and started listening to Tired Minds it took time for his voice to grow on me, but now I can’t imagine the band with any other sound. His tone just fits with the guitar sound the right way. Lyrically I thought the best offerings were from Pigs and Goodluck, both political and/or social commentaries. Lines such as “We’re all living dead/We’re all privileged wrecks” and “All of the heavens, closing up/Life is good growing up in this land of luck” seem to express disgust with current social attitudes.
To be honest I don’t believe there’s a bad song on the EP, this is one of the benefits of a four track release I suppose. In saying that they’re all good, it’s worth noting I think they’re all good for different reasons, which only highlights the versatility Tired Minds possesses. I’d recommend going to see them play soon but from what I understand they don’t have any more gigs this year other than an opening slot for More Than Life at The Small Ballroom, so get along to that if you can! / Novocastrian Music Reviews