A dangerous and thrilling mashup of styles, Rochester, NY based Diluted is back with a new EP that's so fresh, it burned my inbox on the way over. Diluted was gracious enough to send over an advance copy of their new offering "Legitimate Bastard" which will be released on August 18th, 2018.
"Legitimate Bastard" is a relatively short release, with its 4 songs all coming in around the 3 minute mark. Don't let the brevity fool you though, this band is explosive.
"Lose My Number" launches the EP with a vengeance, showing the band's angst-ridden rage right from the jump. Fans of NYHC bands like Sick Of It All or Vision Of Disorder will be immediately drawn to Patrick Mulligan (Vocals). Pure magic happens when Zach Coffey (Guitar, Vocals) joins on the chorus parts. The two voices harmonize in a beautifully creepy fashion. Mulligan shows the impressive skill of being able to both scream and sing clean parts. Diluted tells her how they really feel on this track, "Lose my number, you disgusting whore."
"An Innocent Onlooker" gives a different perspective, featuring more of the band's dissonant, angry side. This song also has an interesting breakdown "I thought it was bad before, it only gets worse" and a unique guitar part that reminds me of shoegaze to finish up this mostly hardcore tune. Diluted really are masters of blending styles.
Even more of this style blending / bending is evidenced by "Spintech," the 3rd song out of 4 on the "Legitimate Bastard" EP. This feels like a heavy dance tune, and comes on as a bit of a shock. Short bouts of distortion help this track remain cohesive with the rest of the release. Tyler Creller (Drums) shows off impressive hihat skills and the ability to switch quickly between this disco sounding beat and a heavy chorus part. Mike Kimak (Bass) is also featured prominently here, with the bass sounding loudly at just the right moments.
"Bothered" is the final track, and it is my favorite out of the bunch. Matt Helmer and Zach Coffey (Guitars) are standout performances here, mixing acoustic and electric guitars as well as a proper guitar solo. The overall feel of the song is slower, which makes this the longest song on the EP. This song forgoes the screaming, but the bittersweet emotion in the song is palpable and leaves me wanting another spin.
Diluted has, in 4 short songs, managed to show off at least 6 different styles of influence. They've also made me feel a range of emotions from anger to disgust to pain and sadness. The instruments are crystal clear and the recording quality is top notch. The vocal styles may take a few listens to grow on the general public, due to their harsh nature. I also have an issue with continuity here. The more I listen, the more I get a sense that this is a collection of songs that the band had time and budget to finish up rather than a complete thought. I feel like the first 2 tracks fit together and had a nice flow, but the thought was interrupted by the last 2 songs. I don't want that to be construed as a harsh criticism in any way, though, because these are GREAT songs and I feel like they were ordered perfectly. Each one is expertly crafted, with multiple layers built in to make each subsequent listen more enjoyable.
Diluted is a diverse and talented band that should be celebrated, and their fans will find this new EP to be - wait for it - Legitimate. I hope that this finds them even more fans and friends. As always, YOU need to go listen to this for yourself!
Type: EP release
Release date: August 18th, 2018
Artwork: Kelli Christine Porter
01. Lose My Number (3:11)
02. An Innocent Onlooker (3:11)
03. Spintech (2:52)
04. Bothered (3:31)
How to get it:
4 out of 5 Skulls