A horrible hack

Saturday's Kids - Kids Return


Year Released: 2011
Format: 10"
Label: sncl - art for blind - time as a color
Reviewed by Oli Saunders on Jun 25, 2011
Much has changed for Saturday's Kids since I reviewed their demo about two years ago. Then they were a bunch of Sonic Youth inspired seventeen year olds playing their first gig outside Wales and sticking together handmade demos; now they have embarked on two UK tours as well as a European one - a result of astounding persistence and hard work. The talent is there too to be fair but no band in this realm of music does such a large amount of gigging in so short a space of time without a lot of ambition.

There, of course, has been an evolvement in their musical style too, which has been just as startling. Every record has sounded different, which is a testament to their adaptability but in some respects one must also ponder the sound they are aiming for. Is it truly to push boundaries or a result of whatever band they decide to copy next (consciously or subsubconsciously)? I mean this in the nicest possible way but I find it hard to believe that there are many who enjoy all of their output. The three songs on this split vary considerably too between themselves. The first has a chorus that reminds me of New Order. The second harks back to the band's split with Évariste Galois but with a softer touch in places. Sion's harsh vocals keep things punk whilst trading off with Rhys' singing that comes straight out of the shoegazing 90s. With the band about to embark on a third UK tour I truly have no idea what to expect next.

Kids Return... probably the best UK emo band of the last decade. They will play a final gig in Brighton next weekend and release one final song after this split. Hopefully if you are a fan then you got to see them on their recent UK tour with Human Hands and Your Neighbour The Liar. It was truly wonderful to see them play a bunch of gigs after two years of reduced activity. You could see that the tightness was not quite there at the beginning of the tour but by the final Manchester gig they had nailed it once more. The broken microphone at that gig meant James had to really go for it and his strained vocals came across better than ever to the fifty or so people in the cramped basement, the rest of band perfectly in time. There will be few better emo performances in the rest of this decade; that drum beat on 'The World Is Burning...', man oh man.

Three songs occupy their side of the split - it is weird listening to the record after hearing the songs played so intensely last week. The first song appears to be nostalgic reminescence about playing in the band over the last four years. One thing I must say is that since Kids Return's LP 'Tongue Tied' is so good, they have struggled to surpass it with songs that followed. However, the third song 'Bond St' defintiely reaches these heights. You will struggle to remain stationary as the ending kicks in. A truly great band, RIP.

25th June 2011

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