DIY photographer and film-maker John Clay has spent years of his life in the front row at gigs, capturing the best footage of emerging bands and artists on the London underground music scene. His dedication and loyalty to documenting their efforts has not gone unnoticed, and as a result, Clay has built a solid reputation amongst DIY bands, promoters and journalists. His hard work and meticulous observations have now given him the confidence to step into the spotlight and front his own band; the formidably named Colossus.
Under this new moniker and alongside friend Rob Homewood (bass, vocals), Clay has honed his guitar skills and vocal talent to create a seven track EP that spotlights the pair’s passion for making loud music together. Titled The Gods Hate Colossus, the record is inspired by multiple genres, from 90s industrial rock, through to progressive post punk and ’60s R&B sensibilities. Punctuated by Clay’s direct lyrics, the EP is fuelled by a distinctively DIY spirit and an urgency to be seen and heard within the underground music community and beyond.
Mixed by Nathan Ridley (Hermitage Works Studios) and mastered by Sam Smith (Green Door Studios), from the offset, The Gods Hate Colossus kicks with a restless energy, epitomised on opening track ‘Strike Up The Band’. Between the brooding bass lines of ‘These Days’ and the grinding guitars on ‘Playing It Safe’ and ‘Smoke & Mirrors’, Colossus tear through feelings of indifference and desperation with tenacious attitude. They even make room for two minutes of potent infatuation on the punk-infused ‘Make Her Moan’, before closing the record with the swaggering ‘Johnny Mischief (and his rock ‘n roll dog)’.
Motivated by the political and the personal, Colossus embrace and harness the raw energy that comes with performing live on their debut EP. Together, Clay and Homewood are dedicated to shaking up the mundanity of everyday life, distracting others from the grind of it all, and spreading a message of solidarity in the process. The Gods Hate Colossus is an energetic and endearing statement of angst and autonomy that its makers should be proud of.
Listen to The Gods Hate Colossus here