Review: Remark – Keep Running EP

Review: Remark - Keep Running EP

Nostalgia for music and culture of the ‘90s reached a pretty intense peak in the last couple of years But outside of the emo revival, ‘90s culture — or at least our fascination with it—never really went away.

Keep RunningMoscow’s Remark almost certainly share this assessment of the ‘90s as being an inspiring period for popular music. With the opening crunch of “Comeback,” the first track on new EP Keep Running, comes a combination of a big-budget alt-rock and high-end grunge. It’s crisp, it’s beefy, and more than a little radio friendly.

Yet while Remark nods to their share of indie and alternative reference points from the post-Nevermind renaissance, the manner in which Remark merges a dense, wall-of-guitars sound with radio-friendly hooks sounds surprisingly fresh. Some of that comes from simply not being a carbon copy of Nirvana or Soundgarden or Jane’s Addiction (although the influences are there), the likes of which accounted for some of, arguably, the worst music of the ‘90s. Remark’s reference points, while familiar to a certain narrow subset of fans, are ones that are still a safe distance from cliché. But influences only get you so far, and it’s what Russians add to them that make them interesting. The boom and thunder of “Purple Haze” is thrilling in its own right, but there’s a surprising amount of space in the song, making better use of the loud-quiet-loud approach by letting moments linger a little longer. For the, relatively, slow counterparts of Keep Running, there are two covers: Tears for Fears’ “Shout” and Alex Clare’s “Too Close,” which give the EP an eerier depth.

Remark make great songs that rock hard. That’s more than enough. Buy Keep Running from Bandcamp here.