Muffin popped onto my radar when I saw comparisons to the great 90’s grunge era. Muffin’s four-track EP certainly does evoke that golden era of grunge with its shouty and messy rock but it would be an injustice to sell Muffin short.
Across the four tracks, the band showcase a few different sounds. “False Profit” has an excellent riotous chorus and a detuned guitar riff that spirals into a feedback guitar solo for the bridge. Muffin take from the music school of “give me a simple riff and then go crazy over the top it” and I approve wholeheartedly – particularly with the passionate vocal delivery. “Filter Me” reminds me of early Placebo crossed with the production of Presidents of the USA. Throughout the EP, its the vocals and thin guitar production that pushes an electric groove to the fore. It means the drums, whilst smashing themselves to bits, lack bass and depth (with the cymbals really hissing and muddying the mix) and it gives the whole band’s sound a 60’s/70’s metal rock feel – but grunged. It’s different – but I can’t decide if that’s a positive or a negative – repeated listens over time will tell. “Miss Direction” pushes the bass to the fore with a fantastic riff which lets the guitars freak out over the top. It’s the track that feels the most full audio-wise and therefore is my favourite. “Welcome to the Modern Age” switches out the grunge for something more psychedelic as the guitars wah-wah pedal goes into overdrive and the phenomenal energy – particularly in the chorus – really pushes this wagon wheel of a track faster and harder to round off a fabulous EP.
Muffin’s songcraft shines throughout this EP. Each track has a stand out bridge and thus makes their riffs really strong as a result. Once the band have perfected some of the production of the percussion to make it less tinny and hissy – they will be a force to be reckoned with. If you want in early on a band that will rise – grab yourself a Muffin.
Recommended track: Miss Direction