Opener ‘Fade Away’ has a melody that is best described as liquid endorphins – it’s a whirlwind listen from start to finish. The vocal is driving and powerful and the catchy instrumental even more so. “Maybe I wanna fade away / from all the things you said” is a line that is simply made for being shouted back to The Brookes from rooms they will – I’m sure – easily pack out. My only criticism is the band needs to stop pinching song titles from artists they claim to be influenced by (sorry guys but you’re talking to a fellow Oasis fan, here!)
There’s an angsty tinge to the title track ‘Masquerade’, with another narrative that is easy to pick up and some beautiful imagery to boot “you’re changing like the weather”. There’s a broody, sinister essence to this track which seems apt given the time of year it has been released.
‘Lipstick Stains’ is a racing melody which would be perfect for a high speed chase scene in a movie. Lead singer Ben Keal sings “lipstick stains / all down my neck” with a snarl worthy of Foo Fighters or Kasabian. It’s clear that the band have done away with boyish sounds from their Taking Over EP – these are grown up, full bodied and worthy additions to a truly brilliant set.
Jamie Craw’s melody is unrelenting across all three tracks, Elliot Gant’s bassline is the band’s backbone, and Rob Brealey’s frantic drumming lends The Brookes their fervour. This debut studio EP takes The Brookes to an epic whole new level.
Words by Beth Kirkbride