Sun Traitors – Dark Matter EP
Released: August 19, 2020
Jim Charlemagne // Vocals/Guitars
Iggy Torres // Drums/Backing Vocals
Ed Sanchez // Bass
Australia has a strong tradition of hard rock bands dating back to the days of Buffalo, Buster Brown and some guys named after the power switch on a sewing machine. Local up-and-comers Sun Traitors have released a new EP showcasing their growing confidence as a hard rock power trio. The overall sound is strongly influenced by 90s era alternative rock (in turn influenced by 70s and early 80s rock), with some juicy blues licks thrown in.
‘Kaleidoscope Blues’ gets down and a bit funky on the verses, with some big chords on the chorus. There isn’t much of a key change from verse to chorus, it’s vocally very conversational, but the solo really rips. ‘Down to the Wire’ has a great four on the floor beat, with a bit more aggression in the vocals and some great backing vocals. The solo is really fun, some great wammy bar and a real stomp from the rhythm section. Clearly a single release, but perhaps the limitations of the vocals won’t help radio play on the likes of Triple M.
‘Miss Trust’ has good lyrics and a catchy chorus, but the lack of vocal range really limits what they can do with a song like this. They really rock hard at it though, and it would light up pubs and clubs on tour. The title track ‘Dark Matter’ is a real throwback to early 90s era grunge, and it works pretty well. The riffs are more metal influenced and the existential lyrics fit perfectly. It reminds of the likes of Tumbleweed to be honest, which isn’t a bad thing.
Which brings us to the gem – the closing track ‘In Your Name’ brings a lot of these elements together: rocking riffs, a better vocal delivery, some more melodic guitar playing and a tight rhythm section. Jim is angry on this one and it gives the whole song some serious gravitas. The last 90 seconds is sweet jam with a ton of energy. It’s the stand out track for me, will go well live in pub or festival, and is one I’d play again. Add to your playlist now.
Dark Matter isn’t going to change how you think about music in 2020. However ‘In Your Name’ has enough balls to ensure I’ll check out what they do next. It’s pretty cool that there’s bands who still just want big riffs and killer solos. It won’t be for everyone, but if you need a quick fix of authentic rock, Sun Traitors are a great place to start.
Sun Traitors – Dark Matter EP tracklisting:
- Kaleidoscope Blues
- Down to the Wire
- Miss Trust
- Dark Matter
- In Your Name