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EP Review: Chi-Town Dogs by Gallery Circus

Newcastle duo Gallery Circus release their new EP Chi-Town Dogs, on 4th August via Killing Moon. Comprising of identical twin brothers Daniel & Graeme Ross, adapting their name from the infamous Gallery Cabaret in Logan Square, Chicago, Gallery Circus began in this open mic party spot after the brothers decided to move to the USA and befriend the DIY punk scene. Here they played shows across makeshift venues in the city including punk gang clubhouses, skate parks and rooftop parties.

“We named our EP after the famous Chicago style hot dog. Tasty! We wanted our first official record to reference how and where we started. Having played together in bands all our lives, we had never actually preformed as just the two of us until we moved to the iconic US city a few years back.”

Being a duo, the band are going to get obvious comparisons to Royal Blood. Based on opening track ‘Holland on Fire’ it wouldn’t be a comparison without merit. They’ve delved into the Royal Blood template and come up with something similar but a touch rawer and a little more abrasive. It’s a decent opener. Title track ‘Chi-Town Dogs’ throws some pianos into the mix. It doesn’t really work, imagine Royal Blood mixed with the pop of The Hoosiers, why you’d want to sound like this I don’t know. ‘Sugar’ is more of the same albeit with a riff reminiscent of CKY. It’s not enough to save the track and like much of the EP it sounds a tad directionless. ‘The Flood’ is no better and rounds off a disappointing EP.

There’s something good lurking under the surface, it’s not obvious though. Perhaps with a little more focus and direction Gallery Circus can turn it around.

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