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Powder Chutes - Single Review: Moths to the Flame

05 May 2023 // A review by Kris Raven

Wanaka’s Powder Chutes are hitting hard into 2023 with the release of their new single Moths to the Flame. Coming off the back of 2022 EP Sweet Noise Pollution as well as some impressive live shows, the power house four piece are back with a big track of anthemic rock.

The opening guitar riff is familiar and hooky, a post grunge vibe with a blues tinge. The toms have a nice big room effect and build the song into the centre piece of the track, with the bass adding a solid foundation. Vocalist Henry McConnell has a really strong voice, clear and directive and delivers catchy melodies with power and passion, reminding me vocally of the late Andrew Wood from Mother Love Bone. Their sound has a modern grunge feel, mixed with punk angst and hard rock.

The song takes us in two directions but combines them well. The verse-chorus has a Velvet Revolver feel, chunky guitar with solid rhythm behind it while McConnell's vocals dance between powerful and emotive in the chorus to more subdued in the verses as he delivers the story. I really enjoyed the verse palm mutes with the little intricate off beat tom or high hat cut and the flow and space between the guitars, bass and drums. There is some progressive rock flair and stadium rock elements as well, solid drum fills and guitar phaser taking us into the chorus. 

The song takes a heavier turn by the time we get to the bridge, the toms build into a controlled frenzy, with the guitar and bass grinding in unison, then starts escalating with the vocals delivering a punk rock tirade  all the while shredding lead guitar runs wild. The song then takes another turn with a huge groove laden break down and a big guitar riff. While the song did take me a few listens to fully be involved, I really enjoyed all the small details and flourishes. The production is full and each instrument sits comfortably in the mix with subtle overdubbing of extra guitar layers. 

Powder Chutes will also be dropping their first official music video, performance based that moves between a cool blue hazed stage and performing in their respective houses. I am always a fan of performance vide and the stage shots looked great with the shadowing and silhouettes. I look forward to checking out these guys live at a show soon. 

Rating: ( 4 / 5 )

About Powder Chutes

Powder Chutes are an emerging rock band from Wanaka, producing fiercely original music which is gaining a following both nationally and internationally.

The band are described by Radio One 91FM as “already punching well above their weight in the Aotearoa music scene. With chunky riffs, and BIG fills, they have every head turning”.

Powder Chutes recently opened for ZZ Top, Pat Benatar & Neil Giraldo, Stone Temple Pilots and The Angels in front of 18,000 people at Gibbston Valley and headlined the Friday night live stage at the 2023 Burning Horse Festival.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Powder Chutes


Sweet Noise Pollution
Year: 2022
Type: EP

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