Custody / Spells – Split 7″ (Various Labels)

Custody / Spells - Split 7" - Various Labels

Here is one of the Spells recent works, and it’s a split EP with Custody, a Finnish melodic punk rock quintet. It’s a collective release between Snappy Little Numbers, Brassneck Records, Keep It A Secret Records, and Shield Recordings. After googling around, I realized Custody is an almost equally prolific band as Spells, with an impressive amount of recordings released since 2015. As usual, I am late to the party of hearing this band but better late than ever. A funny detail about this split EP is that the record labels decided to press a limited edition of 500 copies, of which the emerald green vinyl variant comes in 400 and standard black in 100. It’s a cool thing they decided to go with black vinyl as an ultra-limited variant.

This fine piece of plastic carries one song per band. Custody open up with Into The Great Unknown, their four-minute representation of indie-infused melodic punk rock. The song almost immediately reveals that you are dealing with a European band, and I adore their approach to the genre. Many things are lurking around in the mix, such as contemporary melodic punk rock melodies, sliced-up chord progressions, warm-sounding basslines, and moderate rhythmic sequences. There’s a thick layer of indie ambiance over the top, indicating these guys are not only into punk rock music. The lead vocalist continuously levitates between soothing chants and not-so-aggressive shouts, and both singing technics suit the song properly. If you ever wanted to get to know the sound of the band with just one track, Into The Great Unknown would be a perfect example.

Coincidence, Baby, Coincidence! represents the Spells on the other side of this excellent split release. Spells practice what they’re mostly known for, and that is delivering premium abrasive power pop-infused melodic punk rock sound. This composition bursts with many ingredients, such as dirty garage rock, power pop singalongs, rock’n’roll ambiance, and punk rock dynamics. The collective chants at the beginning of the number build up the introduction into a classic sound of Spells that we all dearly love. Their straightforward approach to punk rock music amazes me the most. Even the four chord progressions sound fresh and unique while performed by this Denver, Colorado band, but the dual vocal duties also play one of the significant roles in shaping their sound. Perhaps this song could be volumed more, but that doesn’t spoil all the fun. Quite the contrary, it somehow gives retro vibes to Coincidence, Baby, Coincidence!, so maybe that was their intention.

This split release is something you should check out if you’re into mid-tempo melodic punk rock music. Both bands sound equally good, and the remainder of their discographies is also great, so check out their other releases on streaming services or maybe purchase some of them on vinyl. Head to Snappy Little Numbers for more information about ordering this split release.

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