I’m a relative latecomer to the music of Golden Bats, a distinctive one-man mauling machine from the vicinity of Brisbane, Australia. The first release I heard was the Falling Sparrows EP that surfaced last spring. It made an impact, something like a grenade going off inside my skull. I’m now keeping a close watch on what Golden Bats is doing.
Today Golden Bats has revealed a new two-song EP named Superplateau, which I had the shivering pleasure of hearing in advance of the release, and I’m helping spread the word about it… because it’s very good.
As the man behind Golden Bats (Geordie Stafford) explains:
“The two songs here were written for inclusion on compilations that never materialised, the latter being tracks by or inspired by Ennio Morricone. Always liked them so revisited the mixes and here they are. Couple other releases on the horizon, but mainly focusing on trying to find a label home for a completed album.”
The title track, “Superplateau“, is a bleak, brutal, and haunting experience. With a tribal drum rhythm establishing the groove, Stafford brings in a brooding, lumbering, heaving riff that sounds lethally radioactive, as well as his own raw, lacerating voice. The impact is intense, and becomes even more so when the music begins to stomp. A slow, eerie, moaning solo adds an element of psychedelia to this grim display, with another brief solo at the end that appears like an apparition.
As explained above, fans of Ennio Morricone’s music for Sergio Leone’s famous westerns have a treat in store with the EP’s second track, “Noose Jig“. The opening dual-guitar performance provides an unmistakable nod to the great composer, and then Stafford greatly magnifies the weight of the melody with the entrance of a cauterizing riff, a gut-slugging drum rhythm, and that raw, incinerating voice.
The song is appropriately named, because it’s thick with doom, like the drop and bounce at the end of the hangman’s rope. At the end, a reverberating lead guitar paired with acoustic strumming, the shimmer of strings, and that distinctive forlorn whistling gives a last bow to the man who inspired the track.
You can pick up this EP at Bandcamp for free (though I hope you’ll make a monetary contribution), along with all the other Golden Bats releases, including the one that first turned me on to the band (and I’m including a stream of that one right after Superplateau).