They played the Brain Wave all-dayer on Easter Sunday this year and since then London duo JOHN have gone from strength to strength. With a support slot to Talons and a festival appearance at Southsea Fest in the pipeline, they’ve also become BBC 6Music favourites. On 15 September, they will be releasing their debut EP, simply titled ‘JOHN’.
Opening with ‘Big Game Tactics’, a song that has been a feature on national airwaves for the past month or so, this song is gloriously reminiscent of the mid-00s rock scene that was spearheaded by Reuben, Mclusky and Yourcodenameis:milo. Full of loud riffs and vibrant vocal delivery, it’s a potent beast of a track, with just the right amount of self-doubt and indecisiveness in the lyrics: ‘The more I looked, the worst it got’ and ‘Yes, no… I don’t think so’.
Extremely loud for a two-piece, there’s more of a DIY feel to the opening of ‘Homme D’affaires’, which appears to include some finger clicks that really shouldn’t work – but do. The rage surges through the song as the band deliver, in a jittery Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster style (especially on the elongated pronunciation of the word ‘correlation’), lines about taking shoes off and other mundane life elements. The closing track on the EP ‘+’ has an altogether more rich sound, but loses none of the edge that makes JOHN so feisty. Melodic and varied in its pace and structure, the song closes amongst a mixture of distorted guitars, crushing drums and some satisfying pop hooks and that’s it. The EP’s finished. Three songs within eight minutes of unadulterated noisy pleasure.
If you like grunge-infused noise (and why wouldn’t you?), JOHN is a name you should be shouting from the rooftops.