Modern Guilt are set to release their debut project ‘You’re Welcome’ on the 25th of June. The UK Based rock and roll outfit perform with a gritty yet polished version of garage rock. Incorporating elements of psychedelic, hip-hop, Motwon, and Surf, ‘You’re Welcome’ is a collection of anthemic, head banging tracks. In an age where many deride rock n roll as a faltering genre on the verge of fading away, Modern Guilt are part of a growing collection of artists who are pioneering a resurgence through modern adaptations of an age old genre. And no, they are not to be confused by the Beck album.
The group takes their queues from 70s garage rock quite clearly. Their adoration for heavy yet melodic guitar riffs is noteworthy throughout the album. Consequently, there’s a little bit of The Strokes in them as well. Double Denim, the song linked in the video down below is one of the promotional tracks for the project. It’s the perfect opener track that sets the mood for the rest of the project, immediately outlining what you can expect from Modern Guilt. Carried by a riff that’s bound to leave you jumping along, alongside a slightly distorted solo and a fantastically intonated vocal performance, it’s immaculately constructed garage rock.
‘Hoping for the hoping’, released last year in October is structurally quite similar to its predecessor. The70s never sounded so good in 2021. But of course, it would be reductive of me to merely classify Modern Guilt as a group imitating a sound long gone. Their is a modern element to their sound, one that can be heard in the way the production chooses to slightly leave some sounds and vocal elements distorted.
‘One-fifty’ is as up tempo as it gets, with a defiant ‘Come on’ being yelled at in the chorus alongside a seamlessly intricate riff that kicks into third gear when the percussion starts during the chorus. ‘Get Along’ is a bit more minimal, or at least it seems so until the vocal harmonies kicks in. The electric solo on this track is undeniably masterful. I won’t spoil the closer too much, it’s lyrically and vocally the most impressive of the lot. Where the rest of the tracks feel almost like isolated, catchy, bangers that are bound to perk the ear of any rock fan, ‘Shadow Boxer’ is more of a journey.
I often lambast the death of ‘gritty rock’. The slightly, albeit intentionally, haphazard sounds of distorted instruments, aggressive guitar riffs, and roaring vocals make rock music so inherently emotive and expressive for any listener. While we do see a lot of innovations within the genre that are really revealing that there is no one true form, it’s nice to come across an album that for all intents and purposes is ‘good old rock n roll’. Modern guilt are bona fide rock stars, and while that appraisal is often thrown around to anyone these days, in their case, it is a quite literal descriptor.
Be sure to check out their full EP, ‘You’re Welcome’ on the 25th of June. If you love rock music, you don’t want to miss out on this.