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Album Review: Caves - Collection

‘Collection’ is exactly what it says it is a collection of songs by Bristol 3-piece Caves. Culled from their debut 7” and their four way split 10” with CalvinBall, Pure Graft & Big City Plan alongside two brand new tracks, ‘Collection’ is eight songs of punk rock flavoured with the feel of 90’s college rock. The obvious comparison for Caves is Lemuria, but they aren’t actually that alike bar the female vocalist. Caves are much more punk in their sound, and thankfully they avoid the dull Indie that too often befalls Lemuria.

Caves have mixed the track-listing up nicely, and all the tracks fit together well. Opening with new track, ‘200 Miles’ is a smart move, as it instantly hooks those that are already familiar with the band, as well as being an explosive start for the newbies. There are no overly complex rhythms in Caves’ songs, but they do sound good, and the basic formula of guitar, bass and drums combine well behind Louise Hanman’s vocals. Other new track, ‘No One Knows’ is just as addictive. Hanman’s voice is again powerful and distinctive, and unlike so many new bands, her country of origin is clear to hear.

All of the tracks on ‘Collection’ ingrain themselves in the listeners mind. Caves have written some ridiculously catchy choruses that are neither sickly nor polished, and maintain the raw energy that’s expected of a band in their genre. Some of the strongest songs on the album are the original demo tracks. ‘New Orleans’ and ‘Sick And Tired’ are masterpieces, that easily hold their own against similar American counterparts. However, it is a track form their four way split, ‘Sad Year’, which is the overall standout track. Hanman’s vocals linger from start to finish and are complimented superbly by the backing vocals. Musically, the track is faster and harder, and the combination of the guitar and drums in particular is superb.

Caves brand of honest and thoughtful punk music is nothing short of a delight. They offer a different and distinctly British take on this increasingly popular brand of soulful punk. ‘Collection’ is a must have for any fans of "orgcore" punk, even those that have Caves prior releases.


'Collection' by Caves is available now through Specialist Subject Records.

Caves on Tumblr.

Dan Issitt

Alter The Press!