The pre-release hype for any band to deliver on their potential talent can be pretty tremendous at times. Inevitably, there will be huge expectations and preconceived ideals of what the final product should or shouldn’t sound like, and this can either make or break a band’s impact. Hertfordshire band Redwood have attempted to channel that promise and energy into their EP Lay Your Love Down and deliver five songs that take the listener on a varied sonic journey.
Each track is uniquely distinct and an indicator of Redwood’s vast influences along with their electrifying yet emotional songwriting. Opener “In Your Arms” establishes the proceedings with emotional melodies and choruses alongside a vibrant, pulsating energy and carries that momentum throughout the rest of the EP. Much of the songwriting here is very mature and dramatically rich – represented by an understated yet sophisticated sonic palette – and contains moments of sheer bombast followed by some of pure intimacy.
As a band, Redwood are very much aiming for anthem-sized material, and their ambitions do indeed come together on tracks such as “Denaline,” which immediately announces itself as the most grandiose and visceral selection the EP has to offer with its kinetic guitars and soaring vocals. As effectively as they handle the bigger moments, Redwood also manages to be adept at delivering more understated bodies of work as well. Closer “Yellowstone” starts out as a warm and mellow indie number before descending into one of the EP’s more visceral breakdowns, ending the album on a cathartic yet exhilarating note. The musical and emotional range of track “Magnolia” which offers up a tranquil beauty amid some textured arrangements is another showcase of Redwood’s dynamic flair toward composition and performance.
On the whole, Lay Your Love Down establishes that Redwood are a band with a vital and distinct presence. The EP manages to double down on the promise of Redwood’s hype with soul, intelligence, and genuine resonance. Five songs may seem like a small start for now, but this EP is an indication that Redwood is more than capable of laying down some genuine talent. Keep your eyes peeled.
Songs to Spin: “Magnolia,” “Yellowstone,” “Denaline”