China Rats formed in the summer of 2011, filled in for Bat For Lashes last summer when Natasha Khan & Co. couldn't make it to a music festival, and are being hailed as the next Arctic Monkeys by the British press—and yet, they've only released four songs.
How? Well, listen to their music and it becomes very apparent very quickly. The four-piece from Leeds is steeped in rock'n'roll history--particularly of the British variety--from the Beatles to the Buzzcocks to Oasis to the most recent wave of garage-influenced bands. What ties it all together, besides the fast-and-furious pace, are the jangly hooks that are sprinkled throughout the tracks.
That much is clear on "Nip It In the Bud," the band's fourth track (which we've got the exclusive premiere of below). From the opening riff onward, it's the type of song that makes you want to start jumping around a mosh pit with your closest friends, screaming lines like, "I know that I can't but I really, really should," at the top of your lungs.
In fact, it was that very feeling that inspired the song in the first place. "We wanted it to sound like The Sonics or something, rough around the edges. We were all shaking round our practice room like we didn't give a shit," says guitarist and lead vocalist Graeme Thompson. He adds, "It's got a bit of a groove to it--I'd like to think people could jive to it in a club or before they go out."
To see what he means, listen to the song below--we've got both a free stream and download, so the song's yours to keep. And then put China Rats on the top of your SXSW must-see list. Not least of all because, as vocalist and lead guitarist Luke Smith puts it, "We don't mess around with synths and shit--not yet, anyway!"
REBECCA WILLA DAVIS
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