18 Dec 2015

Dorje / Catalyst (EP review)

After taking what could be described as ‘a little while’ to hone their sound and feel, Brighton based rockers Dorje release their first extended EP to acclaim and chart positions, which seemed unfathomable before it’s release. There is so much I could talk about with this band, but let’s skip all the stuff about frontman Rob Chapman working for the UK’s most reputable guitar shop as well as owning his own guitar company etc. etc. and keep it short and sweet because in reality, you should get 3 lines into this review, stop reading and go and listen to it.

If you are a fan of intricate and carefully crafted riffs owing influence to grunge, prog and metal amongst endless other genres, then this band is for you. But to get one thing straight- this is not a metal record. It has a heavy feel and features extremely technically proficient musicians but in a way, which is accessible and will drive the catchy hooks and huge choruses into your head mercilessly- which leads to what I would describe as a dark and heavy brand of alternative rock before anything else.

The highlight on the 5 song record is All, a wonderfully crafted effort which is like a showroom for Chapman’s impressive vocal range. The sheer amount of parts in all the tracks crushes any sense of repetitiveness but this one stands out specifically as the melodies are beautiful and the gritty vocals do a stellar job of portraying a range of emotions.

The production on the record is also second to none, especially when you consider the band did it all themselves albeit in a top studio. Interesting vocal effects and extra-terrestrial guitar wizardry make this EP stand out from almost anything else I’ve heard this year, despite the fact that I’m not a Metal nor a Progressive fan.

Dorje are living proof that you don’t need a label or a huge budget to be successful in the music industry and embarked on a mammoth UK tour over the last month.


(written by Oscar Sault)