Yellow Streak sees the aptly named quartet Simmer nodding towards emo’s early 90s legends and succeeding as they do so
o synonymous with grunge is early 90s Seattle that history might have you believe every band dressed their punk influences in plaid. Not so Sunny Day Real Estate, emo’s finest act and the starting point for Cheshire quartet Simmer.
As to be expected from a group who take their cue from such an act, theirs is a brand of wrought, gut-wrenching punk that’s clothed in sepia tones. Opener Douse brings the atmospherics of shoegaze to the band’s post-hardcore stylings, creating a sound that’s not unlike that of the excellent Cheatahs but with a harder edge to it. It’s Head Trip where the emo influence really rings true, though: with racing riffs and a claustrophobic ambience, it sits somewhere in-between SDRE’s Diary and Pink Album and is the EP’s standout track. Laying Odds follows with a sound akin to 90s heroes Braid trying to break through glass, before the simmering Yellow Streak closes with foreboding melodies clashing against a frozen wall of sound.
Simmer aren’t the first act to mix emo and shoegaze. With their evident sincerity and taut songwriting, they are though one of the more compelling acts to do so. Consequently The Yellow Streak is a record that those who know Seattle for more than just Soundgarden will find much to enjoy in.
Verdict: Emo for those with a taste for the genre’s classic era