Channeling post-punk acts of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, the Wirral, UK duo of The Webb blatantly wears its influences on the sleeves in both the music and the band’s self-produced videos. With several albums already under the belt, Little Pieces is the latest installment of The Webb’s continued DIY quest, available as a pay-what-you-want release on Bandcamp. Mixing the dramatic vocal style of early Siouxsie Sioux with some retro synth, The Webb does manage to grab onto the retro heartstrings at times, but sadly more often comes up short of capturing lightning in a bottle.
Starting off with “Falling Down” may have not been the best choice for The Webb as its low-fi, borderline chip-tune styled synths sound a bit muddled and messy and don’t carry the grit displayed later in the EP. The track also manages to be painfully repetitive in composition and in the lyrics, leaving the song feeling like a chorus set on repeat. “Little Pieces” works to wash the memory of the previous track from the listener’s mind showing a better mix of basslines and the aforementioned synth. Whether it be an intentional stylistic choice or a constraint of budget, the rough production values actually work in favor of the track, giving it more of a classic feel. “Nocturnal Abyss,” unfortunately, returns to the synth-only sound that so badly hindered “Falling Down,” and while the track is immensely more lyrically diverse than “Falling Down,” it’s very poorly structured and rather than a chorus on repeat, it seems to be completely lacking in one, leaving the song feeling like an inconsequential marathon. Thankfully, the EP ends on a better note as “Took My Soul” goes beyond synth alone, this time incorporating some simple yet effective guitar flourishes, but it and the previous track, “Little Pieces” suffer a bit from their overly simple, repeated ad nauseam chorus.
While The Webb’s efforts to capture classic post-punk magic are definitely admirable, the overly repetitive and simplistic songwriting displayed in this EP will leave a lot of listeners wanting. The Webb does manage to strike all the right nostalgic chords and the heavier reliance on low-fi synth when offset with some other ingredient offers just enough to move The Webb beyond just simple imitation and give the music enough character to warrant attention; one just hopes that the act’s overreliance on simple repetition, especially in its choruses, isn’t as painfully obvious as it is in this short sampling.
The Webb Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TheWebb.band
The Webb ReverbNation http://www.reverbnation.com/thewebb4
The Webb SoundCloud https://soundcloud.com/the-webb
The Webb Bandcamp http://thewebb1.bandcamp.com
Gothic World Records Website http://label.gothicworld.it
Gothic World Records Facebook https://www.facebook.com/GothicWorldRecords
Gothic World Records ReverbNation http://www.reverbnation.com/label/gothicworld
Gothic World Records SoundCloud https://soundcloud.com/gothicworld
Trubie Turner (Flexei)