Bovine are a 4 piece from Birmingham making scuzzy, grungy, up-tempo rock. The band present their debut album The Sun Never Sets on the British Empire and it’s a mental blend of Off Kilter-era earthtone9, later Eighties Matchbox material, Bolton’s To the Bones and fellow Birmingham grungers God Damn.
Having to use so many bands for reference should give you an indication that Bovine are a pretty unique little outfit. The Sun Never Sets… begins with the ambient Barium before kicking down the door and blowing your face off with the raucous Ghost Chair. This song brilliantly sums up what sort of beating you’re going to get over the next half an hour.
The songs are all built on a wild, crashing rhythm section that bolsters the songs while the duel vocal and guitar attack of Marcus Vvulfgang and Thomas Peckett croon and yell over everything. Both men do a rather spectacular job of creating memorable riffs punctuated with some wonderfully atmospheric leads that turn into random chaos when they feel like it. Bovine’s music might sound boisterous but it’s structured flawlessly, flows magnificently and not a single moment feels jarring to listen to.
No other song manages to encompass Bovine’s dynamic quite like Heroes are What? The song starts with a dissonant, acoustic intro before launching into the album’s best riff. The song is completed with a brilliant vocal melody that develops into harsher moments when it needs it. Heroes are What? is pure rock perfection.
Bovine’s The Sun Never Sets on the British Empire is an exciting, brash and surprisingly interesting record that manages to balance its’ visceral elements with excellent melodies. The whole record flows naturally from one song to the next and offers one of the most solid listening experiences a rock fan could ask for. Bovine have put together a stunning debut which sets the bar for the rest of their career extremely high. No pressure or anything lads.
Bovine’s The Sun Never Sets on the British Empire is available to buy on CD and vinyl from the band now.