Pulo Revé are certainly an intriguing prospect; with comparisons to one of my favourite bands, Enter Shikari, I was certainly excited to hear this debut release from the group. Although this album does at times meander into the overambitious, the majority of it is engaging and skull-crackingly brutal. With a better quality of production and a major label behind them, they could go very far indeed if É is anything to go by.
The album in its quieter moments is very Plini-esque, with some nice fingerwork on acoustic guitar. I’d even say that sometimes, especially in the opening movements, and in a perverse kind of way, it sounds more like a record from Fun. than someone like Enter Shikari. But it is blasted away in guitar tone and authoritative vocal work, and this is to be admired.
The comparisons to a band like Enter Shikari are definitely understandable, considering a lot of the spoken word lead vocals and savage breakdowns that infest this album. But in reality, the melodic undertones on a personal level harken more to the work of Being As An Ocean, or even bands like The One Hundred at times. Which is great, until the times where this record falls down; when they overegg it.
If you’re going to have a wall of sound in a record – fierce drums, percussion, heavy guitar tones and bass, then vocals on top of that – you need to have a mastering quality to match. Pulo Revé’s work is all great, until they try to go one level beyond: it is the mastering that lets them down. The sad thing is, Pulo Revé needn’t have bothered trying to go for a full onslaught of sound. Tracks like ‘Of All The Bodies In The World’ indicate that the desired effects of awe can be acquired through their accomplished guitar work and brutal, often unexpected breakdowns.
That’s what makes this album enjoyable, but damned frustrating to listen to. In glimpses, Pulo Revé show nothing short of raw, incisive talent. But in others, the edge slips away and the brutality becomes blunt and stumbles, falling short of the razor sharp riffs that came before. At least the album ends on a very positive note, with the final track ‘Out’, which is a beautiful marriage of acoustic tones and energetic, groove driven alternative rock.
Pulo Revé are certainly a band for the future. And in this album they show glimpses of a band that can go right to the top. However, the diamonds are buried beneath a layer that is a result of overstretching the mark, and overcomplicating the elements. If this band can expand and simplify, the future is bright indeed.
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