James Duffer (drums/vocals), Joseph Martin (guitar/vocals) and Nick Stanley (bass) are a band from Dallas, Texas called Space Ape that recently released their self-titled debut album Space Ape. The album can be summed up in two words - heavy rock. Of course there are a lot more words which I will use but that's really the brunt of what this album is. Across these nine songs the trio brings some intense rock that you can’t call soft.
They open with “Dreamscape” which initially builds with melodic guitar picking but in just about a minute’s time the band is thrashing hard like early Metallica. The band is on point in the pocket and plows through a number of impressive riffs. By the five-minute mark the band is destroying cosmic arenas and relentless. It’s an entirely instrumental song.
“Break Through Stone” is more condensed, has some vocals and sounds a bit like Queens of The Stone Age. Up next is “Zombie Grin” which is closer to hardcore punk and metal than heavy rock. The band continues to impress with “Dealings With The Devil” and “Bird Dog.” Don’t miss the guitar solo towards the end of “Crashing Tides” or the closer “Ivory.”
There is no question these three players have some talent especially when its comes to the technical side. They make a lot of noise - the band’s metronome like timing adds to the band’s allure. I can’t say their debut is bringing a whole lot new to the table but it should be a welcome addition to fans of music from punk to metal.
Overall, this is an impressive debut with some solid songwriting. That being said I would like to see them carve out a more niche sound on their followup to help them stick out from the crowd. This is a very solid start and I hope to hear more soon.
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