4FT Soldiers & Z-list Tears
WA1 Bar, Warrington
Live Review

4FT Soldiers

A roots digging return to their rough cut and riff heavy days as a trio, signals the start of the Z-list Tears' parade. However, it is not long before the quartet shows that the extra member they added some time ago, has stretched their repertoire. Atmospheric interludes, pepper the well structured newer songs that show an appreciation of what is going around them. One new offering in particular highlights the progression and it is almost an album in a song. In the way that it crams in hanging backdrops, weighty vocal projection and haunting instrumentals that slowly unwind from the rush of raw rock that explodes mid-song.

The venue gets sweatier, the crowd get mobile and the band takes off in spasms of slashing bass lines and volcanic percussion. This is needed to match the feeling and drive instilled in the singing of the passionate Bungle. 'Seed' exemplifies this to a tee, with 'Warning Signs' helping to slow matters down and display a maturity in song crafting. The injustice airing and controlled passion of 'Release', finalises matters. It's no surprise that it is going to be the fulcrum of the forthcoming EP and, if mastered correctly could be the shot of broadness and worldliness that Z-list Tears needs, in order to get label attention.

It's surprising that Lance Armstrong's not in the venue looking for 4ft Soldiers front man, Jim Green for stealing his look. The seedy The Subways skirting opener 'Get Laid' finds favour for its thrust and defiance. A racing Maximo Park base is made full use of for 'Disco', showing Green at his most focused as he builds on the vibrant percussion led accompaniment. Unfortunately, this momentum is lost partly in the thoughtful but weakly built indie/funk grind of 'Scars'. It doesn't have the same impact and even the attention of the amps wanders and the sound appears all over the place. Green does his best to keep people focused with some freestyle rapping between songs. 'Out Of The Home', introduces 70's rawness with a more crafted 80s new wave feel and some well intentioned crowd participation ensures a bracing end.

Dave Adair

Site - http://www.4ftsoldiers.com