Suralin - Leda

9 songs
45:27 minutes
***** *****
Sweet Home


Coming from the small East German town Hohenstein-Ernstthal which is otherwise known as the birth place of Karl May, Suralin may not have originated in one of Europe’s cultural capitals, but that didn’t prevent the quartet from releasing their debut Leda only a short year after their inception. Normally I don’t take label info sheets at face value, and considering that Sweet Home Records are normally into quieter music, I felt disoriented at first by the sheer splendour of what these young Germans are practicing on their first CD. It’s hard to believe that a band can have already such a degree of maturity in such an early stage of their career.

Suralin basically play indie rock, but combine this with the groovy bass lines of post punk and occasionally the visceral fierceness of noise rock. The opener Holy Dancer is a prime example of funky post punk that can’t deny Gang Of Four and Wire as its godfathers. The bass guitar is very dominant, the guitars offer biting riffs, the vocals are subdued during the verses but become more present during the chorus. The following title track veers into a rather opposite direction, with a more relaxed mood and a stronger indie rock orientation. To prove that they have still more aces up their sleeves, Time Is Timeless is a catchy alternative rock hit with wonderful dual vocals, emotional gravity and screaming guitars that reminded me of German noise rock of the Nineties, even though that period supposedly had no impact on the band. Dada Tic is yet another more post punkish track, this time with a strongly angular feeling.

Most newcomer bands would have run out of ideas halfway into their first album, but Suralin are far from finished dishing up future classics of indie rock. The second half of Leda comes with their longer songs where they mash up their different influences into more complex material, continuing the virtues of what preceded, but this time unafraid to have a grooving bass part followed by an enchanting chorus.

While many new bands struggle to find their identity, Suralin have not only created a highly enjoyable debut, but have given it a suspenseful structure, starting with accessible and less convoluted songs before giving way to an even more mature approach that proves that they are fully able to fit all their different ideas into one song and still make it sound great! It doesn’t happen very often that I opt for the maximum grade, and even less so for debut albums, but if there is any justice left in the world, Suralin will make it very, very big!

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