Formed in August 2008, Brittle Head Girl is comprised of four Scots that are tearing it up across the pond. The members developed their sound and reputation in separate acts before joining up and collectively taking over the indie rock scene. After their initial burst of exposure there was a shuffling in the line-up and a baby that ushered in a near three-year hiatus, but in that wake came new material. That new material is Zero Heading and it was worth the wait.
“Not On My Watch” is power driven with some saturated Smashing Pumpkins vibes. It’s more grunge than melodic, but those vocals can’t help but whine in the way only Billy Corgan could. It’s distinct and powerful without being distracting. This track has single potential despite its quick bite length. “In A Haze (Get Rich)” has a bold chorus with a very common message found in the title, but delivered in a hopelessly confident way. Not sure if it is satire or the general delusion most musicians have as they try to climb the ladder of success. The song that really grew on me was “Losing Control.” Frantic reverb and feedback vibrate along with a tense intro line on the guitar. This line reforms into the progression, but I wish it had stayed ungrounded and higher in register. The beat becomes the most danceable we hear all record; this track might just be the anthem of Zero Heading.
“Forgotten Man” uses great multi-lined lyrics, builds in the bridge and the chorus pounds repeatedly – “Did you forget to say it’s gone when you’re trying to say hold on,” comes across more emotional with each refrain. The most memorable track of the album for me was “This Is The Time.” The riff hits home and the supporting cast of drums and vocals are executed within the range and context of straight-ahead rock, the style this band really understands and was made to do. It’s like Foo Fighters with a shot of post punk, but minus the annoying angst and tempo.
One would be surprised that this project isn’t purebred American rock. Not to be nationalist, but I’ve never heard such good jams come out of Scotland, at least not in the CBGB formula. Keep in mind; Zero Heading is full length and full force, not the norm for a foreign indie act looking to break into the west. To me, that says confidence and I think that’s just what will take Brittle Head Girl to the masses.
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