Modern Guilt – Joy Control



British Rockers, Modern Guilt, have just released their latest song, Joy Control. This is a punchy garage/rock song that reminded me in many places of early Rolling Stones.

The song starts with an electric guitar and really punchy snare. It immediately puts you in the right frame of mind! For me, Joy Control really comes to life at about 1 minute in when the bass and drums are added.

There’s some lovely tambourine and possibly shaker work in the choruses, and the stops add in a touch of authenticity.

Lyrically, this is a song about someone who hasn’t reached their full potential. Great subject matter, and for me, Modern Guilt are clearly on a path. I’m not sure what kinds of venues they’re playing at the moment but they’re certainly heading in the right direction.
Listening to the instrumentation it is very clear to me that Modern Guilt are probably an absolute blast to hear live. I expect to see them progress quickly.
I like the tremelo style guitar picking on the solo – this is a nice touch and brings the song to life even more.
I’m impressed by the vocalist’s versatility in places and the long twang technique note right at the end of the song was performed to perfection.

Photo credits: Carl Fox

The song is very snare driven and for me, I’d have liked to see a little more separation between chorus and verses with fills and changes of rhythm. There’s a couple of fills, but on the whole, the only separation is the addition of a tambourine in the choruses. I realise this is fairly typical of this style of music so obviously, just my personal taste.

From a production point of view, there’s a piercing frequency in the keys that come in at around 46 seconds. I’d just give a little dip in the EQ around 9kHz to keep this under control. I’d also consider a little dip around 200Hz to keep the tuned note of the snare a little less dominant. Perhaps a wide boost around 60Hz to give the kick even more punch.

I suggest having a look at The Killers – When You Were Young as a reference track for production.

Overall, a well written and well performed song that I can see doing well on the British rock and garage rock circuit. If the Marquee were still open – this would be the band for there! I look forward to hearing more from these talented lads.

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