Fizzy Blood are one of the handful of British bands who seem to have been in stasis for a while now, but given that their whole scene is the same, that’s not really a shock. They belong to the same school of thought that Pulled Apart By Horses once led, forging an atypical alt-rock path by way of grunge, garage-rock and small pieces of Queens Of The Stone Age-esque groove for good measure. That’s an ecosystem that seems to work on its own terms, remaining adjacent from most other branches of UK rock and really only shifting within its own ranks.
At the minute Pulled Apart By Horses’ crown has been usurped by Tigercub, but Summer Of Luv appears to be Fizzy Blood breaking out of their rut and throwing their hat into the ring. It mightn’t be enough to cut off their lead just yet – Tigercub are a much more focused prospect even at this stage – but Fizzy Blood’s embrace of variety carves out a spot all of their own. Even among five tracks, Fizzy Blood are casting their net wide and doing it well at that, ranging from jagged power-pop like ADHD, creaking, pseudo-gothic stomps like Haunted and even a slightly cock-eyed look at modern pop on the title track’s intro.
It might seem a bit messy on paper, but thankfully there’s never anything on Summer Of Luv that strays too far off the beaten path, and there’s enough of a common thread to hold everything together. For one the guitars are right in line with the fuzzed-out riffage of their contemporaries contorting into various extents of groove and sinister hollowness on tracks like Healing Isn’t Free, contrasting just enough with Benji Inkley’s cleaner, more manageable vocals to hit a near-perfect balance. It speaks volumes that there isn’t really a bad track here (even though Pawn just falls shy in the memorability stakes), with Fizzy Blood’s focus having a clear melodic foundation in its sights, rather than just how much noise they can make.
It’s amazing how much difference that makes, too. Compared to how forgettable so many of these bands can be, Fizzy Blood doing more than the bare minimum of bashing out a bunch of distorted riffs and calling it a day makes for a much more satisfying experience. Their mettle will fully be tested by a full album, but at the minute, there’s plenty to get into here; Summer Of Luv has a tight hold on a scene that could easily be seen to have run its course.
For fans of: Tigercub, VANT, Royal Blood
Words by Luke Nuttall
‘Summer Of Luv’ by Fizzy Blood is out now on Killing Moon / Alya Records.