Review: On The Ropes, Apollo Junction
On the Ropes is the latest release from Leeds five-piece Apollo Junction, a band I've followed for years and coincidentally the last band I reviewed - so I'm going to have to try very hard not to repeat the superlatives! Their last track, Borderlines, was one of my top tracks of 2020, so I had high hopes for this one....and I wasn't disappointed.
Opening with a falsetto harmony and melodic keys, we're soon plunged into that driving rhythm that Apollo Junction are so well known for, but this time it feels...new. Fresh. Different. Their hallmarks are there, from the powerful, direct vocals and bass-heavy beats to the swirling synth and guitar building to a crescendo, but there's a definite vibe to On The Ropes. I hate comparisons, but imagine Kasabian thrown into the '80s, jamming with Depeche Mode and New Order, then coming home via Britpop in time for the Leeds match. Now we're getting close. Maybe that night out they had with Serge had an influence...
Set to be another firm fixture on gig setlists, this lacks none of the intensity of previous tracks but adds a new element to mix things up a bit. Stomping rhythms? Check. Holler-along chorus? Most definitely. Just on the edge of dipping into Duran Duran before the chorus? Well that's new. And I love it.
Apollo Junction have been steadily gathering fans of late, and it's great to see them getting the recognition they deserve. Inching ever closer to that second album (which I'm waiting VERY patiently for!), they're racking up followers, streams and airplay at a rate of knots. Prolific on social media, if you give them a follow on whichever platform you like best - I favour Twitter, personally - they're all about the interaction. Genuinely down to earth and always up for a laugh, you get the feeling that, even when they're top-flight radio darlings, they'll always be there for their fans.
Momentum is also building nicely for their rearranged homecoming gig on November 27th, plus a newly announced show in Preston on the 26th. You can get tickets here, but seriously, be quick;
On The Ropes is released today (January 22nd), search for it on your favoured platform or click here for Spotify