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Loose Tooth: Saturn Returns

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There’s an uncomplicated charm to Loose Tooth that is infinitely magnetic. Their debut EP Saturn Returns fires up with opener Bites Will Bleed, the unadulterated buzzing of solid chords – reverb and grit – churn in a revolving groove. Vocals soar and swing, echoing hypnotic passages. “When you leave. Your bites will bleed.” A broken relationship and the urge to hammer out a scathing right of reply is realised here with full force. Hopelessness, bitterness and resentment seamlessly become a source of strength, one that only intensifies with each listen. Playing with familiar sounds and themes, Loose Tooth quip the basic sensibilities of garage pop with a rare ability to reach both sweet seduction and unguarded rage at will.
 
In the lead up to this release the Melbourne three-piece became the latest signing to Milk! Records. With a song like Back of You there’s no questioning that they’re right at home on the local indie powerhouse’s roster. A heavenly slice of playful jangle sways alongside the effortless bop of a warm bassline – you can hear it sitting soundly between Barnett’s Avant Gardener and Fraser A. Gorman’s Broken Hands in a Milk! Records compilation. Bassist Luc Dawson gently sings and breathes sighs of contentment, as closure ensues. The lyrical direction of the seven-track EP dials in on human interaction, documenting post break-up tensions, vulnerabilities and shows of strength. The down to earth delivery says it all.
 
Saturn Return’s certified belter, Will You, harnesses the edgy creative zeal of Thee Oh Sees, all guts and gusto. There’s no mistaking Mikey Young’s mastering on this release. When Loose Tooth step on the distortion pedal, or inject a mere touch of sonic urgency, it’s pushed to the brink with no intention of releasing the foot off the gas. In Saturn Return,Loose Toothhas a licence to change it up with a new-wave cut in Heat Waves or ride out the surfier Oooh… while never straying too far from their identity: the simple, and subtly beautiful sum of parts that make the release so beguiling.
 
 BY CHRIS SCOTT