The Cedar Falls - Abandon EP

I have written a sentence about The Cedar Falls before. It was in the review of a promo compilation CD called 'No One Gets Out Alive II' and, if I remember correctly (actually, I just checked it. Shhh!), it bordered on flattery. In fact, if not for the punk 'n' roll appeal of Disarm, then I would have put these South Western alterno-rockers down as the best band featured.

With a list of influences that namecheck all the usual suspects from the post-grunge world of guitar-heavy alternative music, you would be excused for thinking that maybe this was one plaid shirt too many in the wrong closet. A ray of salvation does, however, break through the moody grey sky in the form of a great vocalist and some big riffs.

The title track (and EP opener) may be a little too close to 'Palahniuk's Laughter' by Fightstar - riff wise, at least - but the melodies and vocal lines draw comparisons to Live and Incubus. In fact, the latter pop up again on 'Twilight', albeit fused to a Nirvana-style exercise in slow-fast-slow songwriting. 'Unity' has another huge riff, this time reminiscent of the self titled album by Lit. Final song 'A Place To Stand' is an acoustic number with soaring vocals that cements The Cedar Falls into the position of outside bet for bigger things.

Not the kind of thing that I'd sling on my stereo after a hard day's cock knocking, but the sort of stuff that will get iPods shuffling in college bus stops the length and breadth of the UK.

by Gaz E.

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