2016 looks set to be the year of the 90s revival, with bands like Allusondrugs and Superheaven flying the flag for new grunge rock. But, Milk Teeth are bringing the attitude and punk to the genre and standing out like a massive fuck off sore thumb, and it’s all for the better. ‘Vile Child’ is the much anticipated debut full-length from the Gloucestershire band who are bringing elements of the nineties and noughties, but now setting the tone for what you’ll be listening to this decade.
Although seemingly about to explode, Milk Teeth singer and guitarist Josh Bannister left the band just 3 weeks before the release of the record, leaving Becky Blomfield to take over as sole vocalist for the band.
The tracks with Bannister taking the lead are usually the more haggard and raw outbursts; ‘Get A Clue’ could almost be a Cancer Bats song in stages, but shows the passionate creativity that fuels the band when you sit it next to album opener ‘Brickwork’ that resonates at the same frequency as Foo Fighters‘ seminal hit ‘Everlong’. He’s also able to pick up the tempo during the excellent ‘Cut You Up’ which, when you remove the aggression and growl that surrounds it, has a catchy and melodic chorus throughout.
Fans should get used to the idea of Blomfield taking the microphone from now on, as the band will continue as a trio for the time being. Her fronted tracks have the largest 90s throwback, with ‘Crows Feet’ and ‘Moon Wanderer’ having the fuzzy alternative feel that Stone Temple Pilots and Garbage mastered 20 years ago. The tracks are certainly more relaxed, but still have the same interest that the heavier offerings do and have such an impressive maturity that you don’t often see in such a new band.
‘Brain Food’ may be the pick of the whole bunch, as a killer garage rock hook lines the song and cuts off before Blomfield hits each line in the chorus to emphasise the nonchalant lyrics without having to shove them down your throat.
So, how does the future look for Milk Teeth? Will the departure of Josh Bannister dampen their success as a band commercially or creatively? It’s surely going to be a big year for the band regardless, but it’s a shame that we won’t get to see the two vocalists combine on the emotionally excellent ‘Leona’ again. Keep your eyes and ears open for the next chapter.
Written by Mike Heath (@MikeBeef)