Every year you will be told that such and such a band sounds like nothing you have ever heard before. Now and then that’s true, I mean I genuinely can’t think of many groups that sound like Babymetal. However, more often than not it’s rubbish. They might sound like two bands you’ve heard before smushed together, but the influences are still there. But while I am not going to tell you that you have never heard anything like Puppy before, I’m going to go out on a limb and say you haven’t heard much like it.
Which should be evident right from the start of Vol. II, their latest EP. ‘Entombed’ kicks things into gear with some Pantera-inspired groove before dropping into a Ghost like verse… and yes you have read that right. Because if there is one thing you can say for sure about Puppy, it’s that they never quite do what you expect.
In my notes about this band, there are just name after name of the various groups that come to mind. ‘My Tree’ sounds like Weezer if it was played by Alice in Chains. There are also elements of the Foo Fighters at their must grungy, but with a lead singer who does sweet rather than Dave Grohl’s bellow.
Then you are onto ‘Arabella’ a simple, delicate track that will hook it’s way into your mind and refuse to leave. It’s around here that even as a reviewer you have to throw your hands up in the air and tell everyone to stop listening to what you have to say about it and go and listen to it yourself.
Because in a year when alt-rock has been dropping brilliant albums on a nearly weekly basis Puppy still manage to stand out. This grunge inspired EP has got fuzzed up chunky riffs for days and yet at the same time has a beauty and a delicacy that makes it special. This is what you get when you have a band that grows up on Metallica, Alice in Chains and Weezer, and it is uniquely Puppy.