Release Date: 20th April
Label: Kenneths Records
Genre: Punk rock
The EX EP is the fourth release by The Kenneths. Two years since EP Double N was released, the trio are back with their new five-track spectacle which showcases the the band at their finest.
Kicking off this EP comes ‘Favourite Ex’. Opening with a moaned sigh, this is a nostalgic break-up song recounting the good times of a past relationship. For the first time in the band’s discography, drummer Aicha takes the lead on vocals and the softer tone she brings to their music is greatly complementary. Drew’s bright bass line carries this song through the chorus until the guitar bounds out of the background and ramps up the power and energy. With a sound this vibrant, there is good reason for this being the leading single for the EX EP.
Instantly heavier is ‘Model Man’. The instrumental is hard and fast from the outset and, coupled with Josh’s rough and visceral vocals, their punk influences are overt. Becoming more upbeat for the chorus, this is an exhilarating track that it is sure to be a hit when played live. Although keeping a faster pace, ‘Emulsion’ isn’t as stimulating due to its more subdued tone. This is a refreshing break from the previous songs, but ultimately doesn’t have quite as much impact. A solid song, but it is overshadowed by its predecessors.
With a title like ‘Answer Machine’, it’s only fitting that to hear this song you had to use an answer machine. When this track was released last week, The Kenneths showed their creative flair by plastering their social media with a phone number (020 3858 7439) which rings out to this song. Although introduced by a steady bass and drum line, this soon takes the backseat in the layers of the song as for the first time on the EP, Josh’s vocals truly take centre stage. The more stripped back sound allows for the vocal tone to really take precedence and, accompanied by Aicha’s gentle harmonies, this creates a more melancholic tone. However, this is a melancholic song with a punch as the instrumental battles with the vocals for the limelight throughout the chorus.
We’ve had a taste for past relationships and now come the future ones. Rounding off this EP comes ‘I Don’t Wanna Go Out With You’. The guitar leads this song with their staple fast tempo and concludes EX with an uplifting tone. Despite being short, the punk energy with a new twist shows what this band is really about as these songs are written to be live crowd-pleasers, and that really shines through even on stereo.
Overall, this is a fantastic EP by a greatly underrated band. The Kenneths are consistently on the ball with their music and, if EX is anything to go off of, the only way is up for this London punk trio. A must-have release for any punk-rock fans.
Recommended Track: Favourite Ex