Koyo: You Said It

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Koyo are from Leeds but the sound is American and they’re one of those bands who sell a bazillion albums in the Heartlands but never do so well over here; Hoobastank springs to mind, mocked by snooty critics but selling 10m albums.

It’s a sound British bands often fail to do well, either being too arty (Placebo) or too much like a second-rate pub band (Stereophonics). When bands do get the sound right, they usually struggle: Long-view were great, the more indie-ish The Boxer Rebellion are loved by critics but hardly known, and so on. Koyo get it pretty well bang on.

The music is melodic rock with big listener-friendly riffs and pleasant vocals. They try and throw in a few curve balls: Ostracised is a bit nu metal with a harder sound that’s more like Korn than, er, corny rock, although just in case anyone panics it has a really, really catchy falsetto chorus.

In a few places they show what they’re capable of and go more proggy but they never lose their sense of melody.

Closer All Odds is one of the more prog-based tracks but it never degenerates into everyone thrashing their instruments and producing no tunes.

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