Oldham upstarts the Twisted Wheel unleash their five track EP ‘You Stole the Sun’ boasting influences ranging from Chuck Berry to Public Enemy and Slade to the Small Faces. Rich as they are then in their cultured musical taste the most prevalent characteristics in their music carry an attitude and uncouth demeanour normally associated with the Clash or Weller’s Jam. Half a paragraph in and we’re almost swamped in the names of musical legends that sprung to mind when listening to this band. Impressive going for an unsigned three piece distributing their own EP I here you say… not so much.
As admirable in their ballsy approach to song writing as the Twisted Wheel are, the shouty choruses, stripped down guitar work and forceful grit with which the tracks are shoved in your face are more endearing than epic, more ordinary than awe-inspriring. The title track ‘You Stole the Sun’ pretty much epitomises the short collection of work in telling a quirky narrative with some well arranged word play and acute guitar work. A broad Mancunian accent thrown in to the mix makes for a catchy confession of how Jonny Brown stole our sun, and much like the object in question the song catches the unsuspecting with a harsh start to the CD, the effect, unfortunately is less of a star each time round.
The stand out track ‘Strife’ slows things down adopting a more thoughtful construction marrying clever quips with a melodic hook to provide easily the most likeable song on the EP, here Brown flexes the type of songwriting muscle which is overwrought in the fervent nature of the earlier tubthumping tracks.
Twisted Wheel may not follow the world beating path the Manchester music press have set out for them, however the climate is certainly right for someone of Brown’s ingenuity to captivate crowds with a tongue as sharp as his own. The songs, whilst reeking of their wonderful working class attitude, are in many places melodically challenged, needing a switch up from the rockabilly ear bashing that four of the five tunes offer. The talent is evident as is the attitude and passion, the like of which will undoubtedly attract the attention of a wider audience in the future and as it does so a maturing Twisted Wheel may be rallying the rabble-rouser in you, sooner than you know.