Castro – The River Needs

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Castro – The River Needs LP/ CD (Boss Tuneage)
I recently reviewed their debut EP and I was a big fan of that record already, so when I got the opportunity to get a review copy of this album I jumped at the chance. Castro are a relatively new band from Norway, but boasting veterans from many bands from the past twenty plus years, they are no newcomers when it comes to writing great songs. In particular vocalist Katja’s old band life … But How To Live It? has always been one of my favourites. This album builds on the foundations that were laid on the debut, taking punk and hardcore roots and adding a good slab of rock to the construction. But it is a rock that is full of heart, a bit like when hardcore bands of the 80s expanded their sound and added all manner of influences. Think Shudder To Think, Samiam, Verbal Assault – not that Castro sound like any of those, but I get a similar feel when I listen to these rocking tunes with a warm and sincere sound. If anything the full length is less instant than the first single, with songs like “Indigo” or “Paleface” demanding a little more engagement from the listener. But once you start to dig the tunes, they embed themselves under your skin and you cannot help but marvel at the performance and songwriting. I am very happy that this record exists. Tom Chapman

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