We’re finally entering spring, and with the up-turn in the weather comes the somewhat summary first LP ‘Colours’ from Bristol two-piece Superlove.
The band style themselves as boundary-pushers of the rock genre and draw from a broad palette of musical flavours from raucous contemporaries such as Biffy Clyro and Royal Blood to the pop-punk of their youth, with a healthy smattering of EDM beats and warm synthesizers. These numerous ingredients are worn with pride and mashed together with wild abandon.
An irreverent reference to their eclecticism opens things up; footsteps trying to find their way to the studio, accidentally barging into the rehearsal spaces of jazz and metal outfits along the way.
Superlove declares itself early with ‘Save Yourselves’, a mid-tempo rocker with hammering ‘Rage’ style riffage – a theme that permeates the rest of the album. There’s a refreshingly British quality to the vocals that sets them apart from similar acts who tend to take on the American drawl of their influences.
The record benefits from a thorough mixdown by Bristol’s rising star Tom Cory, super clean but with enough mouth-froth to please one’s lizard brain.
The savagery is drawn back for track four ‘Maybe I Could Tell You’ and settles into a more central space skin to The 1975; a wash of cleaner guitars and a more tender, earnest vocal performance. This gives way to ‘wanna luv u’, where the pop chops are removed from the fridge and firmly slammed on the counter. There’s a distinct Owl City quality to it, highlighted by a processed octave lead vocal and jangly synths. While confidently done, it’s hard not to find it a little jarring in context, but as the band, themselves say, ‘We knew we could write ten big rock songs but I can’t think of anything less interesting. Mission accomplished, it’s certainly not boring.
It’s at the back third that things begin to wander. While difficult to be specific, it feels less inspired than the earlier tracks and the band’s mash-up spirit seems to have wanted slightly, relying on sonic innovation from earlier tracks to do most of the lifting. It’s not that any of it is poorly done, far from it, but it lacks some of the joy evident earlier on.
Given what Superlove are trying to do, it would have been really interesting to see them reach for the sounds on the dusty shelves after the singles were done. It feels as though they’re dipping their toes into what they could achieve and their bag of tricks runs much deeper.
This being said, ‘Colours’ is still well worth a listen, and a worthy contribution to a new wave of genre-breaking music. Superlove isn’t reinventing the wheel yet, but who cares? The last time I checked the wheel worked just fine.
Overall, ‘Colours’ is a committed and finely crafted slice of noughties nostalgia for a new generation and hopefully the first stride of many for a band on the rise.
‘Colours’ hits the market on 1st April 2022 courtesy of Rude Records.
You can catch them live at The Black Heart, London 5th April 2022