SINGLE REVIEW: FloodHounds – ‘Quicksand’


Boy oh boy do FloodHounds deliver the goods. The headline here is that ‘Quicksand’ is a blast of swampy psychy down and dirty rawk ‘n’ roll. And it is worth, well worth, getting the good biscuits out before cranking it to the max.

For those of you who are saying ‘Floodhounds, who are they?’ Here’s the briefing. They started – at least at the time I first heard them – as a kind of bluesy indie band. Since then they’ve taken the odd swerve into alt-rock, always with a touch of the blues or psychedelic rock, before ending up here. In a way it makes sense, because you see Jack, their vocalist and guitarist, just can’t help what I assume is an internal insistence to include big somewhat retro, bluesy psychedelic rock guitar sounds.

The other thing to love about FloodHounds is that they play beautifully. The three of them stand out individually; I say stand out when I mean that when you listen to their individual playing it’s jaw droppingly good. But when they lock together,, the collective sound is like a bulldozer; unstoppable.

Before we go on ‘Quicksand’ is about something. “‘Quicksand’ is all about the emotional turbulence of life’s journey, exploring resilience in the face of moving “two steps forwards another backwards,” says Jack. “Life rarely moves in a straight line but the song is about finding the determination to forge on regardless through unpredictable situations,”

How this track sounds is therefore a reflection of what the song is about. The sound is overwhelming because life is overwhelming. The backing vocals at times almost seem to reflect the monotony of life’s little obstacles. The chorus sounds like the collapsing of walls around you, It’s swampy because, well, because quicksand..

I guess if we’re being picky here it might be more accurate to say ‘a blast of swampy psychy down and dirty alt-rawk ‘n’ roll’ instead of ‘a blast of swampy psychy down and dirty rawk ‘n’ roll’ because yes, there are hints of that alt-rock ‘format’. But somehow that ignores the downright uniqueness of the sound of this track. The oddness of the dual female backing backing vocals that oddly sound rather punky or cartoony or even new wave, the compelling swirly section. It also ignores the inventiveness of the riffs.

But make no mistake this, my friends, is heavy – or even ’very ‘eavy …very ‘umble’ – and dirty. I played this to one of my metal loving friends, and they were convinced it was some edgy metal band. It has hints of classic rock, punk, the psychedelic blues sound of certain early Fleetwood Mac tracks, and pinches of garage rock. And even a dash of weird japanese pop.

The thing is you might not hear all all this stuff I written about, you might describe this as a fucking great rock track; and that’s cool. It is. It’s my job to pick tracks apart until the stuff I heard makes no sense as a blending of sounds, until you’re so confused that you have not the slightest idea what it sounds like.

It is equally my job to cut through all of my picking apart and tell you that this, people, kicks arse, it rocks, it bloody rocks hard. You can rock out to it, you can dance like a crazy person to it, you can blast it loud and proud. With every release FloodHounds get better and better, and ‘Quicksand’ is the current pinnacle, how high they are in the sky, Every release is a sign of where they can go; further. Get on this right now, no excuses, no delay.

The info

The band are

Lauren Greaves – Drums
Jack Flynn – Vocals/Guitar
Anna Melidone – Bass

“We had a blast loading the track up with more guitars than I can count, squealing stuttering feedback from sizzlingly overheated amplifiers. My trusty stratocaster just wasn’t enough for the grisly sound we were after so I ended up playing the majority of the song upside down on Gavin’s collection of right-handed humbucker equipped guitars,” says Jack.

“We even added some piano parts with some Iggy & the Stooges style high octaves stomping away in the chorus,” Lauren adds

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Frank is the website guy for Local Sound Focus. Takes a lot of photos and loves writing about new music.