The Stopmotion Men - What Now?

Craig Broad 01/02/2010

Rating: 4.5/5

The Stopmotion Men, a three piece band from Cardiff, Wales have been progressing nicely in the Welsh alternative scene since their inception in 2006 gaining support slots to the likes of The Automatic and The Feeling amongst others alongside airplay on South Wales Radio and Sky TV. The new year brings their new EP 'What Now?' followed by a release launch gig at Cardiff's Globe on the same date, so is it fair to say that big things are perhaps afoot for the Welsh three piece?

Despite being on a small independent record label run by their friends, The Stopmotion Men initially stand out due to the great production on 'What Now?'. Greg Haver who has produced Manic Street Preachers and Super Furry Animals to mention just two of a long list of standout acts from his career has done an amazing job here and if The Stopmotion Men get to make an album, he should be at the helm, no doubt. Stand out track 'Spit And Chew' is an absolute mammoth of a song and sounds huge for a three piece band, adorned in rich orchestral sounds sounding much like Biffy Clyros 'Living Is A Problem Because Everything Dies', a gem from their successful 'Puzzle' album but with Eddie Vedder vocals and more intent. Vocalist Geraint Connor is actually a huge selling point for The Stopmotion Men because he is so versatile. On opening track 'What Now?', Connor hits the heights of all the big time grunge stars and doesn't sound out of place at all, while on 'Hurt You' he is more than happy to show his fragile side as you hear his vocals emotionally crack in melody. The use of piano really does make a difference to the EP aswell, adding beautifully eerie elements to each track, how Ben Wilson manages to be a complete monster of a drummer and play piano at the same time, I will never know.

From the start to finish of 'What Now?' you get a sense that The Stopmotion Men are probably what Biffy Clyro want to be in terms of their orchestral sound, reaching the grandiose heights of a modern day Muse but without losing rawness like they have of late. This is the beautiful and sorely missed sound of Aereogramme mixed with the legendary Pearl Jam perfectly and to be honest, The Stopmotion Men are easily one of my tips to be signed by a major label in 2010 because on the strength of 'What Now?', you'd be a fool to suggest anything other than that they are going to be absolutely massive.

The Stopmotion Men Myspace