Solids - Else EP

Dine Alone Records 2016

One of the great pleasures of listening to Solids' four-track EP, Else, is the wave of noise and distortion that washes over you created by the pounding drums, thumping bass, and distorted guitars. And, unlike the breakneck speed of their debut LP Blame Confusion, Else seems to show the Montreal duo of Xavier Germain-Poitras and Louis Guillemette taking their time and allowing for both the songs and listeners to breathe.

The EP begins with "Blank Stare", a track that has a punchy drum beat, crunching guitars, and a forward driving sound which eventually mellows and fades on a rounded bass line and staccato plucks of the guitar. This is followed by the more emotive, yet equally fuzzy, "Wait It Out". Things pick up again on the EP's third track "Blurs".

The highlight of Else is its last track, "Shine", which demonstrates the imagination and creativity of the band; it seems to push more towards the psychedelic as compared to the rest of the EP. It begins with Guillemette's drum beat, which is less punchy and more rounded. This change gives one the feeling that the drums are surrounding more than attacking them. An infections undulating bass line quickly joins in, which fills out the groove. The buried and repeating lyrics further add to this psychedelic feel. As the track drifts to its conclusion, wafts of wobbly and whooshing sounds fill its sonic space. If "Shine" is anything like what the band has in store for us in the future, their distorted fuzz is also about to get a whole lot weirder.

The grungy sounds are still prevalent on Else but a more nuanced approach to tempo and rhythm demonstrates growth by the band. These changes enable one time to focus and differentiate the fuzzy sounds created, all of which combines to create more interesting musical arcs.


--Fredy M. Iuni hosts Hiway 1, Mondays at 7PM on CJLO