Guitars. Throbbing drums. Droning reverb. Bludgeoning guitars. Fracas reverb. All the pieces are there and Allusondrugs have fitted them into their respective places. The Castleford noise merchants have emptied their pockets and split skin on guitar string for their debut single ‘Plasters’.
Doused in reverb and tinged with all the potent embers of alternative rock, Allusondrugs have shaped and sanded their debut single into a consensual twine of ferocity and harmony. Title track ‘Plasters’ rides the torrent of alt-rock guitar breaks, pounding drums and bold vocal contrasts. The battle of British indie, shoegaze and American punk-pop vocals skip nicely with the effect-steered guitars; they almost emulate the earlier song-writing style of The Cribs morphed with the US harmonic twangs of Death Cab for Cutie and Monsters of Folk.
Delving further into the pool of alt-rock and punk-pop styles, Allusondrugs cascade the former reverb guitar sounds, albeit with heavier and more dynamic intentions, on ‘Chemical On’. Distinct from the jingle-jangle guitar sequences from ‘Plasters’, ‘Chemical On’ provides the heavy hitting, guitar punching and adrenaline spitting rage needed for the bands relentless gigging in the City of Leeds and all of its surrounding towns. The chemicals really begin to bubble and fizz during the rifting guitar breakdown and the screaming vocal intervention, adding the dynamic edge that defines the alt-rock genre.
For their debut single, Allusondrugs have ripped a page out of the alt-rock song-writing manual, chewed it up and spat it out again. They’ve written hard bitter-biting songs and are ready for anything. Does their debut single draw them to the top of the rich Yorkshire music roster? Sadly, no. Although the Castleford based fuzz junkies have produced a fine debut single release, the cutting edge to their song-smithing seems to be regrettably lackluster. Maybe it’s the thinness of the fuzz on the bass and the guitars, or the chemistry of the vocal harmonies, but Allusondrugs seem to be missing that final and crucial ingredient. Although the songs are more than enjoyable, that single fix of pure intensity and niche is still missing.
Despite their fruitful efforts, Allusondrugs still stands a tone away from a complete sound. They have an all but assembled puzzle; there is still one piece missing.