Local alt-rockers Castilles are set to launch their debut EP, Intercontinental this Friday night at The Retreat in Brunny and HUM has been fortunate enough to attune ourselves to the 3-piece’s latest offering in preparation.
Comprised of Jules Valentine (guitar/ vocals) and brothers/ former Flyying Colours bandmates Sam (drums) and Josh Dawes (bass/ vocals), Castilles have been gigging harder than most since 2016. Intercontinental comes after recording sessions in 2018 through ‘19 and harnesses the band’s impulsive live energy that makes them such a razor-sharp rock n’ roll outfit. The LP is a perfect presentation of the band’s range, traversing blues, psych and garage styles all infused with a hint of, no-too-distant, Australian alt-rock nostalgia.
Lost In The City
The album opens with some staccato strums that pave the way for Valentine’s soaring pipes as he offers up an ode to the wanderings among the back streets of Collingwood that yield “black lungs and blacker eyes. Arpeggiated lead licks in the chorus enable the vocal melody to blossom with the feeling of the day after the night before.
The first single taken from Intercontinental is a blistering piece of blues-infused rock. Lead guitar bends and slides its way across pounding drums in memory of The Vines or Jet at their peak. The chorus rocks with distortion and rolls with Dawes working his way both up and down the bass’ neck. It’s a song entrenched in the freewheeling impulsivity the band stand for.
Open Like A Front Door
With a foundation that carries on the torch of the preceding blues sensibilities, this midway point on the EP has its fingers in many pies. Phrases are differentiated by funky rhythm guitar, a wistfully psychedelic chorus and moments of unabated garage rock derailments. These genre-based pivots are all glued together by the band’s idiosyncratic fuzzed-up feel that, as the title implies, catch you by surprise with each transition.
Instigator Where all prior songs hit hard and fast, Instigator is more meticulous in its development of tension prior to release. The cornerstone bassline is adorned with acoustic guitar that adds an element of mystique along Valentine’s swagger on the mike before an ascending pre-chorus guides the song into an explosive chorus. This manipulation of energy and emotion make it the track of the bunch. Intercontinental Castilles close things out showing yet another side of themselves with some sophisticated garage rock. The primary hook is reinterpreted throughout with palm muting and single note versions whilst a heavily syncopated rhythm section, comprising the Dawes brothers, gives the closer its drive. Another strong chorus offers a nice catharsis for the simmering build of the preceding passages. See Castilles launch their EP this Friday nigh, 29th November, at The Retreat with supports from The Bone Shack and Cahill Kelly. Intercontinental is available NOW through all good streaming services.