Hailing from Sydney’s Northern Beaches, Inklines have thrived in the live music scene for the last three years, having headlined their own shows after the release of their 2018 EP Willing & Able, as well as supporting British India in the NSW leg of their tour the same year. In 2020, despite being unable to perform live, Inklines have continued to accumulate influences from different genres, charge-up their lyrics and push the promotion of their brand and tracks.
And with the release of Book Club, it’s obvious that they are still headed up-hill.
This EP will appeal to a wide variety of listeners as Inklines continue to tow the line between genres like 90s garage, surf rock, pop punk and alt-rock. Book Club contains both heartbreaking and uplifting lyrics, as well as a dynamic structure.
‘All I Wanted’ provides the perfect introduction to their evolving sound with catchy lyrics and simple bass and guitar riffs that will get you tapping the steering wheel. Not to mention, this track made me realise how much I’ve missed a good old fashion guitar solo.
‘Wherever You Go’ and ‘Too Much’ are my two favourite tracks on the album and you can really see influences from bands like Silverchair and Wavves shine through. I can already tell these tracks will be so good to sing along to and they definitely represent how much Inklines cater to live gigs. The combination of Tom Bowden’s piercing drum performance and the melancholy guitar solo takes me back to blasting my Simple Plan CDs in my childhood bedroom. Bowden’s voice has a similar kind of strength and resonance as punk bands of the early 2000s, although he achieves this strength with a much softer tone and considerate lyrics which I’m going to use as an excuse to continue listening to this brand of angsty tunes well into my 20s.
Moving through to ‘Let You Down’, ‘Better’ and ‘Violet’, Inklines continue to delve deeper into the feels with their reflective lyrics. However, they maintain a kind of optimistic daze by pulling towards the surf-rock genre with a heavier, more distorted guitar sound and a rumbling bass from Daniel Mulroney which pulls you through to the closing track.
‘Cornerstone’ lets the vocals and lyrics really shine. Leading up to the last thirty second of the song, I found myself anticipating an explosive breakdown or another guitar solo, but the boys have opted to let the song, and by extension the EP, simmer to a close.
Let’s not talk of what you deserve/
Cause you’ll never know but you’ll do so well/
We can cover what you think you’ve learned/
But the things you keep are the things that burn/
I can save you/
I’ll save you/
If I can save you, I’ll save you.
Inklines are definitely a band to watch moving forward as they continue to thrive in these uncertain times, and I think Book Club has a little bit of something for everyone.