It’s been a busy couple of years for Scottish pop-punk quartet Woes. With the release of their self-titled EP in late 2016, leading to slots supporting Neck Deep and State Champs to name a few, they’ve been making big strides toward the front of the UK pop-punk pack, and with their second EP ‘Self Help’ they ain’t stopping.
Stuart Laing‘s energetic leading guitar riffs, ear-catching vocal melodies and harmonies and an effervescent performance from the rhythm section are the elements that come together to make this band’s unique sound. All of these elements collide together on the EP’s lead single, ‘Losing Time’, with Laing‘s rhythmically bouncy guitar work opening up a track oozing with an inherent catchiness that cannot be ignored.
The lyrical content takes an almost juxtaposing sadder tone, giving an insight into lead vocalist David Jess‘ inner conflict between pursuing music through touring and the struggles of being away from loved ones; “Ain’t it funny how you fly around the world for years to chase a dream / Until you find the one and make a home so filled with love you could never leave / And when you have to, it fucking kills you.”
Whilst the band have securely solidified a distinctive sound for themselves, the EP’s closing track ‘HLB2’ (which, just so you know, is short for ‘Hotline Bling 2’) proves that they’re not afraid of experimentation. The bouncy vocal melodies in the verses and the softly chugged rhythm guitar which sits in the background of the sonic mix carry a vibe akin to a stripped back Issues cut, creating a poppier feel to the track and giving a breath of fresh air to the band’s sound.
If the vast touring opportunities that this band have been presented with aren’t a testimony to the true potential of this quartet, then ‘Self Help’ definitely is. It packs everything you could want from a pop-punk EP, and is a definite stepping stone to grander things for a band that definitely deserve it.