The Empire Police are one of the coolest new rock bands, with a compelling, lively indie rock sound channelled on their EP The Empire Police which was released last month. Made up of Jordao (lead vocals and guitar), Tom (lead guitar), Fynley (drums) and George (bass), the group are based in Preston. In terms of their EP, it’s got quirky indie-pop/ Britpop elements, with the vocals and guitar raw enough to give it an edgy rock’n’roll grit. One of my favourite releases of the year, the EP contains a really exciting interesting bunch of tracks, with each track drawing on unique indie rock sounds. My favourite track on the EP would have to be Taxi Rank, a track I’ve been playing on repeat a lot recently. It’s got this brilliantly light quirky guitar paired by really raw, deep vocals. The track flows perfectly, building up in intensity halfway through with the guitar and drums crashing down in sync to create a heavy, head-banger beat. The guitar matches the rolling drum loops perfectly too, just adding to the immensity of the tune. It opens in the most beautiful way too, with a meticulous single riff being played alongside the bass which kicks in after a couple of lines. It starts off in this soft, light indie way before picking up in pace. Jordao’s voice is amazing too, very deep and dark with an accented edge giving the track a more interesting aura. I’d definitely compare their sound to that of groups like Courteeners, Peace or The Enemy, fusing indie rock with more post-punk and Britpop sounds. I also love Stop The Clocks, which features those same guitar sounds Taxi Rank does. The guitar is slightly blurred with little distortions going on to give it a more classical rock sound, all tied in perfectly by Fynley’s drumming which is especially good on Stop The Clocks. Jordao’s voice is powerful and deep with a really intense dark quality to it, almost like Ian Curtis. ‘Tell me darling, is this what you came for?‘ he broodingly asks, before the track suddenly changes in pace and tone. This is one of my favourite things about the band; they’re very unique and don’t abide by the typical way in which a song should be done- they change pace and beat throughout, making their music thoroughly interesting to listen to.
The other tracks on the EP are Out Of Nowhere, Just By Chance and The Final Crusade. These tracks possess that powerful indie rock sound, particularly Out Of Nowhere which features a fantastically heavy bass, making it seem like an ideal track to be performed live. It’s lyrically wonderful too; lines like ‘Christ’s sake I missed the bus‘ make it a humorous and give it a funny, more youthful edge, whilst other lines like ‘you’re the perfect inconvenience‘ and ‘love would only piss you off if you’re bothered‘ make the track hit you quite hard. I love the fast drum riff on this track too, with Fynley really showcasing how skilled a drummer he is. The crashing-down in the track of the line ‘came out of nowhere‘ (which is repeated a few times) gives the track a raucous indie rock bite, which is really powerful and abrasive. Just By Chance features that guitar sound again, with a blurred distorted riff kicking in from the off, adding to the rest of the track’s power. The vocals are raw and deep again, pairing brilliantly with the underlying heavy bass and those short sharp little riffs. Jordao almost spits the lyrics in this track, which give his voice a much rougher heavier sound which adds to the indie post-punk edge to the track. He reminds me a bit of vocalists like Adam from 485C, or Miles Kane. ‘Fuck it, let’s carry on pretending‘ he yells, accompanied by the blaring rowdiness of that guitar. Whilst this track showcases the heaviness of the band and Fynley’s skilled drumming, these elements are showcased perfectly on The Final Crusade. With its unusual, unorthodox guitar sound and that deeply intriguing drumming, the track is a lot more brooding and intriguing than the rest of the EP. ‘Intoxicated masquerade, a bullshit blockade‘ are amongst the deep lyrics in the track. The guitar is a lot heavier too, with powerful aggression from the band who all play in sync so well together. The guitar smashes with the drums, giving the track a heap of dirty energy and a raw post-punk sound. It’s not aggressive in a loud or messy sense however; it’s a very solid, carefully controlled track which leaves you wanting more and more.
The band played last year alongside bands like Cabbage and Trampolene, and given the increased amount of support and hype around the band following these shows and last month’s explosive EP release, the rest of the year hopefully promises big things for these lads. You can listen to the EP on Spotify, Apple Music, or iTunes.
EP rating: ★★★★☆