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Bovidae

According to scientific research, remarkable similarities exist between the psychological profiles of classical music and heavy metal fans. Surprising maybe, given that most people would place the two genres at opposite ends of the musical spectrum, but despite the crossover it seems successfully fusing the two styles is tricky.

Bovidae are a Sheffield-based trio attempting to do just that, throwing in a bit of free jazz for good measure. There’s no denying their capability. Bovidae are tight. Throughout their self-titled debut, the trio grapple with complex time signatures and quick shifts in tempo without once dropping the beat. Yet this level of precision sometimes leads to the band sounding almost programmed, tied to an overall absence of textural variation. Too much of the album features the same flat mix of overdriven guitar and piano.

Where Bovidae break out of this things begin to work, as on ‘Massive Weird Nun’, where a bit of delay on the guitar gives the tune a lot more space and atmosphere. Later in the same track, there’s a lovely interplay between a clean, syncopated bassline and some wide piano chords.

If Bovidae can carry on experimenting with time signatures and inject a bit more mood into their tunes, perhaps delving further into those jazz influences, they could be on track to be a much more exciting outfit. As it is, I can imagine those classical and heavy metal fans both left wanting more.

Aidan Daly

by Now Then Manchester