Despite forming in 2008 with two albums and one EP already under their belts, Welsh rockers Zebedy’s new EP Set The Pace doesn’t quite meet the high expectations. After waiting four years for new music, fans can expect the same hectic, guitar-driven chaos, while noting the lack of development or progression in style. Zebedy’s influences are made clear throughout, echoing the heavier sides of Biffy Clyro and Don Broco.
Title track ‘Set The Pace’ kicks the 4-track release off with Deez Nuts-esque punk chants but quickly takes on a more hardcore edge as the raucous riffs and fast-paced drum rhythm take over. Infusing a range of genres and their respective stylistic techniques conveys the band’s fluidity, which is bound to intrigue a range of new fans. The shouting and catchy lyrics also define this track as definitely being one for live shows.
Although featuring an array of vocal styles (both clean and unclean) from all four Welshmen, riff-heavy ‘Of Revelations’ diminishes the high standard of vocals set in the previous track. The Biffy-inspired sung gang vocals featured in the breakdown show the band failing to harmonise well, particularly on higher notes, which is rather surprising considering Zebedy is entirely made up of vocalists.
Incorporating short, slow instrumental track ‘In’ as a separate intro to closing song ‘Bloom’ allows more focus on guitarists Jonny Harding-Smith and Ben Chamberlain as they are no longer battling the vocal parts for the limelight, which is seen frequently.
The steady build-up featured in ‘In’ appears to be a one-off though, as the range of styles portrayed throughout the release tend to jump and do not flow with the expected cohesion of a band nearly a decade old. Rather than achieving the desired rough-around-the-edges, chaotic effect, it unfortunately leaves the EP quite messy and overall disjointed.