ARTIST: Tuff Love
RELEASE DATE: 29/01/16
RECORD COMPANY: Lost Map Records
Amalgamating 3 EP’s, calling it ‘Resort’ and releasing it as a monster 15 track chronological compilation is a stroke of genius by Glaswegian guitar pop duo ‘Tuff Love. ‘Resort’ gets its official release on January 29th 2016 via Lost Map Records and it brings together both of the (now sold out & for the foreseeable future digitally deleted) two EP’s ‘Junk & Dross’ & more recent sonically brilliant ‘Dregs’ with a view to introducing Tuff Love’s brand of dreamy, grunge tinged, guitar pop to those who haven’t previously heard the band before. The only missing piece on this epic collection of tracks was the previously released and equally fuzzed out ‘Record Store Day 7’ single’ – ‘Groucho’. Having spent the summer of 2015 accompanying reformed shoegazing stalwarts ‘Ride’ on their UK tour to also sharing the stage with ‘Perfect Pussy, PAWS, Real Estate & Joanna Gruesome’ along the way, Tuff Love’s DIY approach to home recording & producing has carried them in good stead. The band are made up of Julie Eisenstein – Guitar & Vocals, Suse Bear – Bass & Vocals plus live Drummer Iain Stewart (Also A Member Of The Phantom Band).
‘Resort’ opens up with the jangling tones of ‘Sweet Content’. Sublime reverb laced vocals straddle a simple beat until we’re treated to a fuzzed out explosive thrill ride to its finale. Up next, ‘Flamingo’ begins with a melodic guitar line but quickly rolls out into a brilliant slice of fuzzy, grunge tinged guitar pop. ‘Copper’ brings a fuzzed out plodding drum pattern intertwined with that immense vocal & an utterly addictive guitar line. ‘Poncho’ is steeped in early 90’s fuzzed out grunge but just like track five ‘Penguin’ it vocally has a melodic splattering reminiscent of early 4AD stabled bands such as the recently reformed UK based – ‘Lush’. The menacing intro of ‘Slammer’ begins and it continues to build & build until it explodes to a melodic & colourful ending leading the way for track seven, the charging ‘That’s Right’ & again we’re treated to another melodically fuzzed out sonic journey. ‘Sebastian’ brings us back to the heady early ‘Brit Pop’ days and is particularly reminiscent of UK band ’Elastica’ with its repetitive plodding guitars and melodic vocal lines whilst ‘Doberman’ is sun bleached and full of melody as it builds and erupts into its fuzzy chorus parts. Full on jangling guitar pop leads the charge with the impressive ‘Cum’ and again I’m impressed with just how much melody and structure Tuff Love manages to cram into a three and a half minute song? Really cool actually. The fast paced ‘Duke’ enters the frame and fans of early 4AD records stuff will instantly fall in love with its explosive chord structures & duel vocal harmonies.
‘Crocodile’, the bands latest single, is more of the same, all be it for that 60’s psych pop like guitar line that breaks the monotony every now and again & that synth line towards the end. ‘Threads’ is by far my favourite track on this whole release. Its has a very post shoegaze era ‘RIDE’ sound with their album ‘Carnival Of Light’ coming to mind. I think its all down to the charging tempo, jangling guitars & effected vocal lines? Either way, it ticks all of the sonic boxes for me. We’ve slowed the tempo considerably for the opening salvo’s of ‘Amphibian’ and we’re treated to some fuzzed out shimmering psych pop with impressive vocals and a sweet bass line. The albums closer entitled ‘Carbon’ swims in jangling, reverberating guitars & beautifully golden vocal harmonies.
‘Resort’ is a chronological snap shot of work created by Tuff Love from 2012 – 2015. Old & new fans alike will love what this band have to offer as they skip through grunge tinged, jangling guitar pop & shimmering psych pop with aplomb.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Del Chaney has spent the last three years not only fronting popular Irish Electronic duo Analogue Wave but also dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the Unsigned or Small Independent Label based Shoegaze Dream Pop Post-Punk & Post-Rock genre’s of music from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog – The Primal Music Blog. He is also a contributing writer for The Sound Of Confusion. His other arm – Primal Radio – has gained considerable respect from bands and promoters alike since its conception in 2013 & has hepled him in actively promoting a genre of music that he is passionate about. Hailing from Dublin, Ireland, he is a keen Vinyl Collector, Tattoo Fan & all round good guy! He is a self confessed music freak & is never far away from a studio console or a turntable.