Gallows Gate – Gallows Gate (2013)

gallows gate epGallows Gate, the four-piece rock band from Preston released their self-titled EP in September 2013.  They have a classic style with elements of more modern heavy rock and metal.

The four track EP is a “how to” of rock, the intro track ‘Mistakes of Yesterday’ has a heavy start and a very catchy guitar riff.  The chorus is hefty and guitar filled with an easily repeatable lyrical hook.  Later in the track there is a very strong and technically able solo, which I love, my only problem is that everything else drops out and it loses the beefy sound they have sustained so well throughout the rest of the song.

The second track ‘Under Skies’ grabs my attention straight away.  It has a much more bluesy tone, strong drum beat and amazing guitars, all with great tone.  The lyrics jump at me in this song, and this is where I start to lose my love.  They make no sense; I understand the premise of wanting to have a strong blues influenced sound.  They have done that but I don’t think it is necessary to claim being “raised in New Orleans” to achieve that, it’s just a bit cheesy for me.  Other than that this song is great and I really like the chorus, it’s catchy and makes you want to dance.

Third track in ‘Synchronicity’ has a very different take on the music than the rest of the EP and it throws me off a bit.  It’s heavy, but trying too hard to be melodic at the same time.  I start to feel this song is a bit more Megadeth influenced.  It doesn’t give me any thrills, until the chorus, and it sounds like the band I have been listening to again – rock with that blues undertone.  I can safely say this is not on my list of favorites.  It just sounds too Megadeth for my liking, its doesn’t flow with the EP.

Final track ‘Wolves’ feels like the slow track.  While I’m not against it, I wish the second guitar at the start had been more obvious.  It’s playing a beautiful melody and it’s drowned out by a repetitive riff.

It stops being “that slow one” at the chorus where it becomes heavy Megadeth sounding again.  I really don’t like the sound design on the vocals and I think they stand out alone without a ton of reverb.  Just under three minutes in I forget the beginning of the track because wow!  It has that brilliant bluesy tone again and it’s excellently done with the metal influence.  Again my only issues are with vocal sound effects.

There is an amazing solo later on followed by another, and it really blows you away.  There isn’t much else I can say about this song, it’s a bit random but I like it.

As an EP I really like most of this, my problems with it aren’t so much musically just with flow.  The continuity is a little bit messy, but I guess that happens when your influences are broad.  Things I really do not like are the effects on the vocals; it is unnecessary, so just cut it.  It makes the songs sound really cheesy.  In addition, I don’t like how the guitars have a tendency to be a little low down in the overall sound; but again it’s not an issue with the music, just the mixing.  Good EP.  Worth a listen.

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