Hybrid Kid – S/T EP

Hybrid Kid
S/T EP

For the first verse of Hybrid Kid’s debut had me convinced that they were awfully good. “Dropped” opens with a circular, enigmatic, bluesy guitar riff that sounds like it could come off of the best Rolling Stones albums. Unfortunately, it’s after that that I start to doubt them, and rightly so. No one could keep up with Let it Bleed for a whole album, and it’s unlikely that four guys from London could even compete with it for four short songs. They do try, though.
As mentioned earlier, Hybrid kid are a four-piece band out of London, and they are aiming for the same sort blues pop majesty that The Rolling Stones brought to the rock consciousness 40 years ago. Hybrid Kid seem to be talented enough musicians, and their songwriting is spot-on for much of the album, but I have one huge complaint: the choruses. Every time the band launches into a short, simple verse lick, they’re dead-on. It’s when the songs hit the choruses that they lose their appeal.
As mentioned before, “Dropped” opens the EP with a spectacular riff. It’s a jangling, tube-driven swirl, and it sounds great. The melody on top of it isn’t bad either. But when the bands hits the chorus, it’s bland melody ruins the verse’s momentum. It often sounds on the choruses like singer Danny Lloyd is just out of his range. He hits the notes just fine, to be sure, but he doesn’t sound as comfortable.
A similar phenomenon occurs in most of the other songs. The worst offender is “Cotton Head,” which opens in a very Radiohead-ish manner but stirs itself to fits with a frustrating chorus that just never delivers the hook that one expects. “Hook” is another Rolling Stones ode, this time with two nice solos: one of the scratching, Radiohead variety, and another of smooth slide work. It’s the album’s best song in terms of consistency and sonic intrigue.
The final song, “Force 10,” opens with a slinking, hypnotic guitar line before breaking into a country-funk bounce straight off of a – you guessed it – Rolling Stones album. It’s another interesting song, though its disparate parts seem a little forced. Hybrid Kid have some awfully good ideas, but until they can put more than one into a single song, their work will be disappointing.